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Handling An Ethical Dilemma In Hiring

Handling An Ethical Dilemma In Hiring

The success of any company is largely hinged on the quality of the new employee recruitment process. For this reason, a human resource manager must be careful during the recruitment exercise to ensure they hire the right people. Prominent concerns during the process include the ethical and legal dilemmas managers face. While there are conventional anti-discrimination laws that regulate employer-candidate engagement, the ethics of recruitment impact the external business environment as they can affect the reputation of a recruiter and the hiring company (Villegas et al., 2019). Regina faces a few ethical dilemmas as she hires new employees for her newly formed marketing company, Regina Poincy-Zimmerman (RPZ). She has to decide whether she will ‘poach’ social media executives from her former workplace, Ganaflek Marketing, or delay her new clients’ work.

Lateral hiring (poaching) is the intentional action by the hiring authority of a company to solicit employees from another company. While lateral hiring seems like a legitimate action to improve the quality of human resources, companies that engage in the exercise violate hiring ethics. The exercise involves little or no background checks on new hires, a recipe for potential workplace conflicts (Amankwah, & Sarpong, 2014). A recruiter needs to formally request background checks from a former employer and a new hire. Such information will reveal potential sources of conflicts in the new workplace. Also, there is a need to conduct background checks, especially if the new hires are drawn from a rival company. Background checks, essentially, reveal whether the new hires will be productive in their new workplace.

Besides, lateral hiring may expose a company to the former employer’s problems. For instance, a disciplinary action or malpractice suit directed at the new hires’ former workplace may negatively affect the new company’s image (Nandini, Khatri & Tyagi, 2020). The new employer should ask whether the new hires are aware of what led to such issues and their responsibility. Although the former workplace bears the burden of insurance in case of future actions, a negative media story involving such new hires will hurt the image of the current workplace.

Moreover, lateral hiring done in haste takes away the opportunity to scrutinize new employees’ productivity indicators. A hiring manager ought to be skeptical about a new hire’s performance until they assess them through the new workplace’s performance metrics. New hires will likely promise to perform if they are desperate to join the new organization, but keen scrutiny will identify the right pool (Nandini, Khatri & Tyagi, 2020). Unqualified employees may violate client relationships if they get desperate to prove performance.

Based on these ethical issues that characterize lateral hiring processes, Regina should not hire laterally from Ganaflek Marketing. Her decision to laterally hire social media executives seems biased, as she has no proof whatsoever that the new hires will deliver. Besides, her urgency to hire means Regina will not have sufficient time to familiarize them with her new clients, casting serious doubt on quality. If she hires them, but they later fail to deliver according to client expectations, that will hurt the image of her new organization in the long run, and the business may not pick up.

Regina should consider subcontracting her urgent workload instead of engaging in risky recruitment practices. Subcontracting work will help the company handle large projects while accepting new ones. Besides, subcontracting is risk-averse, as it allows the company to give projects to people with significant niche experience. Such an additional helping hand will help the new company grow


Amankwah-Amoah, J., & Sarpong, D. (2014). The battle for brainpower: the role of market intermediaries in lateral hiring. Strategic Change23(3-4), 237-251.

Nandini, G., Khatri, B., & Tyagi, V. (2020). Is Talent Poaching Ethical Or Unethical?

Villegas, S., Lloyd, R. A., Tritt, A., & Vengrouskie, E. F. (2019). Human resources as ethical       gatekeepers: Hiring ethics and employee selection. Journal of Leadership, Accountability and Ethics16(2), 80-88.


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Handling an Ethical Dilemma in Hiring
Your assignment in this unit is to write an essay on the topic of handling an ethical dilemma in hiring. The situation is provided for you in a scenario, and the thinking process is spelled out in the assignment instructions. One way to approach this assignment is to dig in and start writing, following the steps in the checklist. For some learners, this approach does work, although it means keeping a large number of ideas, reasons, and examples in your head at the same time. For most learners, it is much easier to break the process down into smaller steps, expecting to accomplish less in each step, but in the end, having an easier time completing the assignment.

Handling An Ethical Dilemma In Hiring

Handling An Ethical Dilemma In Hiring

Regina Poincy-Zimmerman recently formed a marketing organization, RPZ Social Media Analytics, breaking away from her former organization, Genaflek Marketing. A few of Regina’s major clients followed her from Genaflek to RPZ. These were the same clients where Regina served as the marketing executive on the accounts. Regina knew at the inception of the business she would have approximately three months of contract work before new business must be obtained. Regina immediately developed a social media marketing plan to gain additional business.

Before Regina had an opportunity to deeply assess her newly acquired clients’ requests, she realized she did not have the labor to service new contracts. A number of Regina’s previous co-workers volunteered to follow her into her new business. Regina did not feel, at the startup of the business, it was ethical to strip away Carl’s only account executives who were trained in social media. Today, Regina is reduced to working sixteen-hour days to handle only half of the work requiring her attention.

An ethical dilemma is a situation in which all of the choices facing someone appear to violate some aspect of a personal ethical code of conduct. One of the most common ethical dilemmas occurs when a company’s culture conflicts with an employee’s personal ethics. We often need guidance when facing ethical dilemmas. Here is a checklist of steps to help ensure the quality of your decision:

Recognize the ethical dilemma.
Get the facts.
Identify your options.
Test each option: Is it legal? Is it right? Is it beneficial?
Decide which option to follow.
Ask yourself some questions to double-check your decision, such as:
“How would I feel if my family found out about my decision?”
“How would I feel if the local newspaper printed my decision?”
Take action.
Read the scenario and review the article in the studies, “The Ethics of Lateral Hiring,” and consider the steps to resolving the posed ethical dilemma. Work through the steps above to guide your thinking.

For this assignment:

Discuss the ethics of lateral hiring and whether or not you feel Regina is justified in hiring account executives from Genaflek Marketing.
Suggest one other alternative Regina might have rather than lateral hiring.
Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the alternative, elaborating on why you feel the alternative is beneficial or disruptive to the business.
Write a 400–500 word essay explaining your decision, your actions, and how you have decided to handle your dilemma.

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