Discuss this race discrimination case
Race Discrimination Case
A hiring manager and his interview team narrowed a pool of applicants to two final candidates. One candidate, who is white, had a really great interview and the whole interview team agreed that he would be a great fit with the rest of the team.
He had a bachelor’s degree and five and half years of relevant experience. The other candidate, who is black, also had a good interview, a bachelor’s degree and seven years of relevant experience and had received numerous recognition awards from previous employers for excellent performance. Both candidates met the minimum requirements for the job in question, which included a bachelor’s degree and four years of related experience.
During a closed-door meeting about the candidates with an interview team member and the hiring manager, the hiring manager said that it would be tough to have a black person on the team and that he thought a black person would be hard to manage. He then said that he would ask the HR department to make an offer to the white candidate and proceeded to complete the necessary paperwork. HR policy stated that hiring managers must submit all documents pertaining to the hiring process to HR for review and retention.
Before extending the offer to the selected candidate, the HR representative noticed on the interview notes of the rejected candidate that the primary reason for not hiring the candidate was “not a good fit for the team.” However, the interview notes in response to each of the interview questions did not provide anything specific about why the candidate would not be a good fit for the team. The HR representative contacted the hiring manager and interview team to collect more detail about the reason for not hiring the candidate who had more experience than the selected candidate. The general consensus among the interview team was that both candidates were qualified to do the job and both would have been fine choices.
However, many of them did agree that since the selected candidate enjoyed playing golf in his spare time, he would be a good addition to the team. The interviewer who heard the hiring manager’s racist remarks about the rejected candidate informed the HR representative about the comments. Without documenting the incident, the HR representative, who reported to the hiring manager, phoned the selected candidate to extend the offer of employment.
Did the organization discriminate against the black candidate?
Is this a potential discrimination case? If so, what could the HR department have done to mitigate risk in this case and/or what can they do to mitigate risks of this nature in the future?
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