For an industry often compared unfavourably with those selling used cars and snake oil the recruitment industry has been keeping its nose pretty clean in New Zealand in recent months. That was until tonight when I saw the 6 o’clock News report that revealed a job search scam seemingly set up to exploit migrants in New Zealand.
According to the report, the South Auckland and Hamilton-based Alignz Recruitment told an Indian IT Graduate “candidate” of theirs that they would secure him a job offer, as long as he paid them $5,750 for their efforts.
Now, sometimes in recruitment you get a candidate referred to as a “walking placement”. A candidate so blessed with the perfect skills, experience, attitude, and communication skills that it is a pleasure to refer them into your clients, safe in the knowledge they will most certainly be offered a job. Well this guy must have been more than a walking placement. He must have been positively sprinting because:
“Alignz told K… it had found him a job with Taropages, an online business directory which has since been struck off.
He said he didn’t have any contact with the online company, not even an interview. Despite that K… signed an employment agreement, and renewed his visa to stay in the country.
But he said that when he asked Alignz for a start date, things turned sour.”
The protestations from Alignz’s owner ring pretty bloody hollow to me. Her claims that they had upheld their end of the contract by securing him a job offer are laughable. Firstly, I’m not sure when this all happened but Taropages has been struck off since 29th February this year, more than 6 months ago. Furthermore, I actually thought it was illegal to charge jobseekers a fee for finding them work, which is why recruitment agencies always operate on behalf of the employer and charge a fee to them. Can anyone clarify this for me? Or am I confusing New Zealand’s employment laws with another jurisdiction?
All of us in recruitment, agency and internal, receive a large number of job applications from immigrants seeking work so they can remain in NZ, often following graduation and approaching the end of their study visas. But here we have a recruiter unable to resist the urge to exploit that situation and make some cash.
But it gets worse. When I heard the story I thought “here we go, this will raise the argument for regulation of our industry again.” But then I checked the RCSA membership directory and Alignz Recruitment is actually a paid up member! So, in my honest and respectful opinion, I think it’s time the RCSA stopped fannying around flash resorts in the Pacific and started holding their members properly accountable. After all, their “Code for Professional Conduct” does state:
“Must act honestly in all dealings with candidates, clients, consultants and members”
Time to show some teeth RCSA – this needs investigating properly because it is going to even further damage our industry’s reputation, and that is something we can’t afford much longer.
Now onto more uplifting news, some of you might remember when The Whiteboard was brought to you from Sydney Airport back in March this year and I posed the question “Can We Bring RHUB to New Zealand?” Well I’m delighted to say that the answer to that is now a resounding “Yes!” Destination Talent is bringing RHUB to the Floating Pavilion in Auckland on 18th October and the Rice Consulting team will be hosting a pre-conference party (free for delegates) the night before at Generator. The line up is a who’s who of the New Zealand internal and agency recruitment sector (and me…) and you can get your tickets here.
There are also a couple of cool (and free) social recruiting events happening this month:
On Monday the Social Media Club Auckland is holding its monthly shindig at Telecom and this time around speakers will be discussing Social Recruiting in a panel format. And then on 27th we are hosting the second End-of-Quarter Social Recruiting PowWow, with drinks, networking and a quickfire presentation from Kirsti Grant of Social Sauce fame.
Get involved, people.