After California passed a law banning employers from asking from social media passwords, one CEO fired back in a blog post, criticizing the state for restricting businesses from being able to fully use the resources available to them to make the best hires.
Tim Davis, CEO of Assisted Living, told AllFacebook that while he has never asked for an employee’s or applicant’s Facebook login information (which the law now forbids), he is friends with his employees who are on the social network. He did note that while he doesn’t ask for passwords, he doesn’t think that it should be against the law.
Assisted Living, which launched earlier this year, is a way for seniors to easily find quality assisted living facilities. An impartial care advisor works with seniors and their families to find the best fit, instead of simply relying on the recommendation of an assisted living facility rep who is mainly trying to get their money.
Davis’ blog post illustrated Assisted Living’s hiring process, which heavily incorporates social media searches of applicants. To illustrate how crucial this is, Davis posted a video of one such interview, where a woman was qualified for the job, but did not get it after unsavory content was found on her Facebook profile. Davis showed the woman her profile, noting that it was worrisome. The applicant was speechless.
Davis wrote about this interview experience in the company’s blog:
Did she interview well? From a skill-set standpoint, yes.
Would we hire her? No. Anyone who would put content online that they are ashamed of (as she clearly was) is not the right person for us.
My job as CEO of Assisted Living is to build the best team, and the best team doesn’t mean a group of the most talented people. It means a group of people with the right talent and chemistry.
Chemistry always plays a paramount role in the success of any group of individuals, and for a company, social media profiles help assess whether a candidate will help or hurt that chemistry.
It’s a shame to see laws going into effect that prevent employers from making the most informed hiring decisions.
As more and more people log on to the social network (Facebook now has roughly 955 million users worldwide), companies are doing simple background searches on Facebook to make sure applicants would be compatible. While many people have caught onto this and have hidden or untagged themselves from embarrassing photos, others still have objectionable content freely available on their profile.
Davis explained his stance on the issue in an email to AllFacebook: