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5. Interviews, disclosure, vetting and saying ‘no’

Define a process for supporting candidates rejected due to their conviction

Establish a process for offering support and alternative opportunities to candidates who are rejected due to their conviction, including exploring other roles within the organisation or outside resources.

What does success look like?

  1. A well-defined support process for candidates rejected due to their conviction

  2. Alternative opportunities for rejected candidates

  3. Fair and transparent hiring decisions.

How would Offploy do it?

  • Be honest. Be sensitive. Be understanding. Honest feedback in most cases will be appreciated. Explaining the decision in a sensitive way without pejorative language or an attitude of judgement is something every employer should do, but is not always experienced by people with convictions.

  • Ex-offenders are probably used to being told “No” often without a reason. A person with a conviction will be used to being rejected, especially if they have been asked to disclose their conviction. They may also sometimes wrongly attribute rejection to their conviction even if it is due to other factors. Giving honest and constructive feedback will be appreciated and may help your rejected candidate to succeed in their next opportunity.

  • Explain why the candidate is not being offered the job.  You may have legal constraints which prevent you from hiring someone due to the nature of their conviction. It may be that it is a regulated role and despite the conviction being spent they cannot legally work with children and/or vulnerable adults. Explaining this sensitively will help the person with a conviction to understand and may help them to avoid putting themselves into a difficult legal position with such jobs in the future.

  • Explore whether there are any other suitable vacancies. Even if the individual is not right for the job they have applied for you may be able to point to them to other more suitable roles in your organisation. If they have been interviewed it may also be possible to short-circuit some or all elements of the interview process for the second role.

  • Provide details of external agencies that may help the candidate. For example The Shaw Trust, The Hardman Trust, The Mitie Foundation. If an individual is a military veteran there are a range of organisations that may provide practical help such as The Veterans Charity | United Kingdom | Veterans Charity, ABF The Soldiers’ Charity - The Soldiers' Charity (soldierscharity.org), Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund | Leading welfare charity (rafbf.org), SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity

Examples in Practice

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