Job Descriptions, Applications, and Recruiting

-General Recommendations and Checklists to Guide Your Hiring Process.

These recommendations will help ensure that your application and recruiting process is in compliance with the ADA and improve your ability to identify candidates who have the qualifications, experience, and personal characteristics that best fit your business needs.


Guidelines for Job Descriptions and Applications

Hand holding pen over a job application form.

  • Avoid a “one size fits all” generic description of job duties and qualification requirements. Provide applicants with a  description of primary job functions and qualifications specific to the position listed in your job postings.
     
  • When listing job qualifications, skills, and personal characteristics, focus on the abilities needed for the specific job.  Do you want only applicants with experience to apply, or are you really looking for an employee who can learn on the job, has a great attitude, and is dependable?  
     
  • Make attendance and performance expectations clear to the candidate instead of inquiring about past sick leave or medical history.
     
  • Keep application questions the same for all candidates for a specific position.
     
  • Avoid questions regarding medical history and disability.  Again focus on what the job entails and your expectations as an employer.  
     
  • Also avoid questions that are not directly related to the job.  For example, if a job doesn’t require driving, then the employer doesn’t need to know if the applicant has a driver’s license.  You can ask, however, if the applicant has a reliable way to get to work.
     
  • If an applicant requests a reasonable accommodation or alternate format, be sure to get back to them quickly.  Applicants with disabilities do not have the same opportunity as other applicants if they have to wait for an extended period of time to apply for a position. 
     
  • Provide more than one way to contact the employer. This ensures that applicants can use the method that is most effective for them.  
     
  • Remember that job announcements and applications provided on-line should be accessible to people with disabilities.  A good resource to learn about accessible websites and forms is www.webaim.org.  

Quick Checklist for Job Descriptions, Applications, and Announcements

Job Descriptions

  • Written for the specific job opening.
     
  • Avoids describing HOW a job should be done, instead describes tasks and expected outcomes.
     
  • Physical requirements are only listed if necessary for the job.
     
  • Qualifications and experience are necessary for job and related to job duties.

Announcements and Recruiting

  • Contains a statement showing nondiscrimination on the basis of disability.
     
  • Contains contact information in different forms (telephone, email, address) so people can get information or request accommodations.
     
  • Contains contact information in different forms (telephone, email, address) so people can get information or request accommodations.
     
  • Information about the business is available in alternate formats, if needed.
     
  • Website announcements/information is accessible to screen reading software.
     
  • Staff are comfortable with assisting applicants with disabilities (Example: taking relay calls from deaf applicants.)
     
  • Recruiting fair sites, HR office, etc. are accessible.

Applications

  • Contains a statement showing nondiscrimination on the basis of disability.
     
  • Contains contact information in different formats (telephone, email, address) so applicants can get information or request accommodations.
     
  • Avoids questions regarding disability or medical information.
     
  • Includes “with or without reasonable accommodations” when inquiring if job tasks can be performed.
     
  • Available in alternate formats, if needed.
     
  • Online applications are accessible and there is contact information in case of accessibility problems or difficulties.
     
  • Does not ask questions that may inadvertently disqualify people with disabilities. Example: “Do you have a driver’s license?” (unless needed for job).
     
  • Information requested and questions asked are related to the specific position.