View Full Version : Are they allowed to ask?

04-30-2012, 09:54 PM
I was referred to a job opening by a neighbor who works there. After Applying, I was called in for an interview that went very well. I was then called in for a second interview. At the second interview, I was asked what was the relationship between us. I stated that we live in the same apartment complex.

When I called to follow up, I was told there were no opening right now. Obviously, that is untrue as the openings was listed, and if there were no openings, I would not have been called in for an interview not once, but TWICE.

Iím wondering if someone felt us working together had potential for conflict of interest, or did someone think thereís more going on than there is. Was it even legal for them to ask me about it?

05-01-2012, 12:05 AM
You are well within your rights to ask why you went through the process if there was no opening. I would start there with the questioning. Good luck!

05-01-2012, 08:15 AM
The company may have some sort of policy about family members working together, and I don't *believe* it is an 'illegal' question as it does not try to determine age, marital status etc.

I know when I refered someone to my company, the HR guy asked how I knew them, but then I was not in the interview.

You'd also think they would say something like "I am sorry, we have chosen another candidate" or something like that rather than "We have no openings at this time." That is what I find odd.

Lady Sarah
05-01-2012, 09:22 AM
It is also entirely possible that they don't really have an opening. Any number of things can explain this, the least of which is that the position they were interviewing you for is now unavailable due to budget constraints. I know that when I worked for American Airlines for those brief six months, it would happen all the time. Basically, the duties of the job were so similar to another currently filled position and they rolled the job itself into someone else's position, thereby eliminating the interviewed for position. This wasn't what the other people told me, it was what my boss at the time told me. It sucks, but it happens.

Another explanation could well be that the position you were interviewing for was filled by someone who was retiring, and that employee has extended their date into the future, thereby eliminating the job opening. A third, and completely shitty explanation, happened to another wench locally: she'd go on an interview, get the job, work for two weeks and then get told she was no longer needed. Come to find out they'd hired her on a temporary basis while the original jobholder was actually on vacation. If that was the case, then the holder of the position you were interviewing for cancelled their vacation.

You are well within your right to ask, but be prepared for no answers. The company was perfectly within rights to ask what your relationship to the referral was, as some companies do have nepotism issues. Most of the time they make sure that any family members are not in the same chain of command, so to speak. But simply complex mates shouldn't be an issue at all.