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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2020

    Default Applicant did not meet qualifications


    I recently recruited for a position, and we found an excellent (external) applicant, however he did not have all of the qualifications listed in the advertisement. The qualification in question was for a registered builder, but the position is providing WHS advice to construction contractors, so building registration is not a requirement. HR advised to put the building qualification in there, as we may be able to get a higher caliber candidate.

    Now HR are advising that we need to re-advertise for the position with the building registration omitted, as we can't employ someone who did not meet the (erroneous) qualification requirements.

    This puts us in a difficult position, as we need the position to start shortly, and the lack of this position was identified as a key organizational risk. We are afraid we will lose the applicant, as they were truly exceptional.

    My question is, is this requirement to re-advertise a legal or Fair Work requirement, or is this just an internal HR policy?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Melbourne, Australia


    Hi Sarah,
    I'd say it is just an internal HR policy.

    In the private sector at least, I am not aware of any legal or Fair Work requirement that requires an employer to include or not include any qualifications or experience in a job advert, so long as it is not discriminatory on grounds of age, gender, sexuality, race or religion. To my knowledge (and I have many years experience in recruitment), there is nothing preventing you from hiring someone who does not meet the qualification requirements in your advertisement. It is entirely your prerogative and there a several reasons why you might do that. It is very common for job adverts to list higher qualifications which would be viewed favourably, but are not mandatory requirements.

    That said, it's not wise to list a specific qualification as mandatory when it is not in fact not a mandatory requirement, because it means some people who don't have that qualification will rule themselves out and not apply, but there's nothing illegal about it.

    There's one possible exception, and that is if it could be proved that it was a deliberate contrivance to exclude someone from selection in favour of someone who did not have the qualification.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2020


    This is great advice. Thank you Moz! I will discuss this with HR.

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