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View Diary: Only young pups need apply (267 comments)

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  •  We have fewer than 50 employees (1+ / 0-)
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    So small that we don't even have an official HR department. We're also well versed in federal regs (we evaluate federal and state agency programs), so are careful to evaluate candidates based on their qualifications to do the work...and part of that, unfortunately for a lot of candidates, is "best fit for the job."

    If the job is explicitly entry-level, requiring a BA in a related field and 0-3 years experience doing similar work, and one applicant fits that description, and the other applicant has a JD and 20 years of experience in a different field, they are not "theoretically identical"---for a lot of reasons, the second applicant is not a match for the work being offered.

    It's not about age. Employers are not required to hire the person with the most qualifications overall, but rather the person with the best qualifications for that particular job. The job doesn't need someone with a Juris Doctorate, or years of experience in litigation, for example. If we had two candidates, both with a BA in the field and 0-3 years of experience doing this kind of work, and one is 23 and one is 53, and they wrote equally compelling cover letters, they'd both get a call-back -- those candidates are theoretically identical. The 53 year-old might have 20+ years of experience doing other things, but that does not disqualify them, nor does their age.

    Everyone our firm hires is very qualified; it's a matter of matching the person to the position. If anything, our workforce skews older than average. Since our work is about 95% dependent on our bidding for contracts and obtaining grants, that dictates what qualifications and specific experience our staff must have, and how much they can be paid. As I said, I'm sympathetic, but I wouldn't work for a company that discriminates on the basis of age. Fortunately I don't have to.

    "The truth can't hurt you, it's just like the dark. It scares you witless but in time you see things clear and stark." - Elvis Costello

    by Vacationland on Sun Aug 18, 2013 at 11:23:34 AM PDT

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