Skip to content Skip to main navigation

News

Skilled legal advice with
accessible & personal attention

Corporate fit and attitude equals discrimination by Canberra recruiting firms.

By 1337Hax0r - 28 May 2012 81

I’ve been looking for work for about two months now after the company I was working for lost a contract and announced it would have to make some of us redundant. So have my co-workers.

I’ve been advised of several job opportunities through two major recruiting companies I registered with.

Strangely, one of my co-workers who is also registered with them has not.

I have a university degree. I’m in my late 30s. My co-worker is too, being 2 years older than me. My co-worker has almost the same degree. I have 10 years experience in my field. My co-worker has 12. I have extensive training, experience and skills in my field. So does my co-worker, they have better experience than me really. I have a good work history, no complaints, nothing dodgy, no issues. The same with my co-worker. I was born in England. My co-worker was born in Australia. I had a security clearance, so did my co-worker. I have short, neatly cropped hair and am well presented. My co-worker has hair down past her shoulders and is reasonably presented. I wear ties and a suit. She wears dresses or skirts and a blouse. I’m straight. My co-worker doesn’t talk about her sexuality, but when prompted, once mentioned she is a lesbian, and does not hide that, but nor does she go out of her way to make it known. I have a nice Anglo Saxon name. My co-worker has a name that took me a week to learn to pronounce and longer to learn how to spell properly.

I’ve been told I have the right image, attitude and cultural fit the recruiting companies are looking for. My co-worker has not heard those terms mentioned.

I have been put forward for five jobs. My co-worker has been put forward for none.

I read this article about skills being overlooked in favour of cultural fit.

It seems to me, that’s the new term these days for discrimination. Being hired for attitude and cultural fit over skills and experience? It does seem very discriminatory when I’m being put forward for jobs that I know my co-workers is better qualified for. Until I asked if she had been advised of those jobs I wasn’t even aware of this sort of thing. Though speaking to other co-workers with foreign sounding names, this is quite a common experience in Canberra. My Aboriginal co-worker said they don’t bother using the major recruiting companies anymore because they’ve never been put forward for a single job ever.

I’ve woken up to discrimination. My co-worker has experienced it for years.

What’s Your opinion?


Post a comment
Please login to post your comments, or connect with
81 Responses to
Corporate fit and attitude equals discrimination by Canberra recruiting firms.
Deref 12:48 pm 28 May 12

G-Fresh said :

Truthiness said :

Australia is incredibly racist, right down to our cultural bones

Name a place/country/culture that isn’t.

+1

And many are far worse than us.

arescarti42 12:45 pm 28 May 12

G-Fresh said :

Truthiness said :

Australia is incredibly racist, right down to our cultural bones

Name a place/country/culture that isn’t.

Spot on. Unfortunate but true.

birder 12:42 pm 28 May 12

This is well documented in the United States. Here’s one of the studies, titled “Are Emily and Greg More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination.”

http://scholar.harvard.edu/mullainathan/files/emilygreg.pdf

PBO 12:39 pm 28 May 12

Truthiness said :

Australia is incredibly racist, right down to our cultural bones, we were founded by a empire which prosperred by oppressing and destroying black people, and to this day our wealth is a legacy of that history.

I feel for you and how frustrating it must seem when you think that it is the colour of your skin holding you back although i feel it may be more than that. Try this before your next interview:

http://www.superwhiteningpills.net/

If you get the job then you may be right, if not then it may be your approach to being interviewed and nothing more than that.

Ben_Dover 12:34 pm 28 May 12

More pseudo-sociology/psychology masquerading as good business practice.

Truthiness, get a life sunshine eh?

vg 12:16 pm 28 May 12

I mean your co-worker couldn’t possibly be s***house with poor references could they? It must be because they have a hard to pronounce name, as there’s none of those in contemporary Australian society.

Some people could find the problem by looking in the mirror, and not looking for excuses

G-Fresh 11:30 am 28 May 12

Truthiness said :

Australia is incredibly racist, right down to our cultural bones

Name a place/country/culture that isn’t.

cross 10:48 am 28 May 12

If you’re in your fifties you would have absolutely no chance of ever being re-employed no matter what your sex or creed.

Truthiness 10:44 am 28 May 12

No doubt there is rampant discrimination, I have been on a selection panel where our boss literally went through a pile of resumes and threw out all the ones with names he couldn’t pronounce. I’ve also seen so very many people hired just because they knew the boss somehow.

I use my middle name as my first name on job applications and at work, since it is anglo-saxon. Having submitted hundreds of applciations over the years, under both my strange first name and my normal middle name, it has become abundantly clear that the anglo saxon name gets *far* more callbacks, I’ve even applied for roles under both names, and only got call backs for the english name. Exact same resume, exact same experience, only the name changed.

I’d love to be able to work under my real name, but i much prefer having a job at all.

Australia is incredibly racist, right down to our cultural bones, we were founded by a empire which prosperred by oppressing and destroying black people, and to this day our wealth is a legacy of that history. We can live so well here precisely because we took so much without paying for it, and because millions suffer to produce the things we consume.

We like to think we got rid of the white australia policy, but our migration policies are still massively preferential towards white people, and the average man on the street is still terrified of the “yellow tide”. We still fundamentally think of ourselves as europeans, even thought we are in asia. The higher up the food chain you get, the more slanted things are toward white people. We don’t mind having miners or programmers that are asian, but god forbid the managers and executives be anything but english! Even in parliament, we can elect all the minorities we want, but at the end of the day our leader is still the british monarch.

I personally don’t think there is any denying Australia is deeply racist. The truth is, most countries are racist, even china is massively racist. I actually think racism goes hand in hand with nationalism, as soon as you start thinking your country is better than another country, you’re 2/3rds of the way to racism.

G-Fresh 10:36 am 28 May 12

I too am well groomed.

Duffbowl 10:07 am 28 May 12

Weird thing is, most of the recruiting company clients have models very open to all. It could be that the recruiting companies themselves have made the call based on how they perceive what their clients want. Hey, why bother asking when you can guess?

It could explain why the company I work for doesn’t hire through agencies.

johnboy 10:02 am 28 May 12

One said :

Discrimination is just the start – I would help but it seems that discrimination also exists online between those who type for a job, and those who don’t.

Who would have thought that in a communications medium the ability to communicate might be important?

One 9:58 am 28 May 12

Discrimination is just the start – I would help but it seems that discrimination also exists online between those who type for a job, and those who don’t.

JimCharles 9:35 am 28 May 12

hmmm….a mate of mine had an apostrophe in his Irish surname, which he dropped because of the hassle of banking and IT systems not being able to handle it.
After struggling to get a job it was suggested that his surname without the apostrophe now resembled an African surname and culturally (or racially), this was having an impact.
Stuck the apostrophe back in…..more responses. All anecdotal of course, can never be proven.

Diggety 9:17 am 28 May 12

Yeah, not many really want a walking PC nightmare ruining their harmonious office culture.

Whether she is such a liability is irrelevant, unfortunately; she had her reputation built by others.

1 2 3 6

Related Articles

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top
Copyright © 2017 Riot ACT Holdings Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.
www.the-riotact.com | www.b2bmagazine.com.au | www.thisiscanberra.com

Search across the site