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Interview email blunder puts company in bad light

Posted: 16 May 2017

We've all heard hiring horror stories.

Whether we are conducting the interview or in the hot seat ourselves, the hiring process can be daunting and mistakes are often made. Yet one thing is for certain, when a lack of professionalism goes viral it can be a PR disaster for the company in question.

This is a lesson learnt the hard way by a Tonbridge-based company that has found itself at the centre of a media storm. According to the BBC, the disaster came after graduate Anna Jacobs applied for an office administrator position at the company and found that alongside her response came a string of stinging personal comments attached accidently by a member of staff.

The company attests that the comments were "taken out of context," but referring to an applicant as a "home-educated oddball" who "could be a biscuit short of a packet or a left-wing loon tree hugger" is certainly damning. The remarks went further still with the member of staff suggesting she was: "worth an interview if only for a laugh".

Understandably, Anna was offended that the hiring managers could make such senseless remarks and commented: "I thought how dare somebody say that about my CV and myself. I was just absolutely furious."

Following widespread commentary on the case, Ross Black, Director of Tecomak Environmental Services has apologised to Anna. He told the press: "I understand that it must have been upsetting to read the comments and I apologise on behalf of the company and the employees concerned."

For recruiters, there are a number of lessons to learn here. While 10 years ago this mishap would have eventually made an amusing after-dinner anecdote or, at worst, reached local news, today nothing stays secret for long once it makes its way onto the internet.

Moreover, hiring managers must always remember that there is a person behind every CV, and kindness and consideration costs nothing. Its absence, however, could cost more than just a serious dent to corporate branding.

Take the stress – and potential controversy – out of recruiting by registering your vacancies with Stopgap today and let us whittle down those potential CVs on your behalf.

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