What Job Recruiters Can (And Can’t) Ask You

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job interview questions

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They say the best time to look for a job is when you already have one. Perhaps that’s because if you’re already employed then you have nothing to lose, meaning you approach job interviews calmly and with more confidence. And when you enter job interviews like that, you are more willing to stand your ground. You pay attention. You’re curious, but you’re not desperate.

When searching for a job when you really need one, you may be more likely to just do and say whatever you think you have to to get the job –even if it doesn’t feel right. Even if you know what’s being asked of you is wrong, you just want to come off as agreeable, amenable, and flexible. You don’t want to give any pushback. But you should know what hiring parties can and can’t ask you during the recruiting process. Keep in mind that if a hiring party is willing to push some boundaries during the hiring process, they’ll likely continue to do so during your employment there, so you aren’t losing out by being sharp and asserting your rights. It’s also important to know what questions you should ask to make sure this is the right opportunity for you. We spoke with Keirsten Greggs, founder of TRAP Recruitment, about questions recruiters and applicants, can, can’t, should, and shouldn’t ask.

Keirsten Greggs

Source: Marsden Bigby / Marsden Bigby

Your pay history

The fear when a hiring party asks what you were paid at your last job,= is that they will think, “Well, then that’s what we’ll pay you here.” However, Greggs urges hiring parties to “Remember some are looking for jobs because the last job didn’t pay enough.” Another reason could be that getting a salary increase within one’s company is very difficult, says Greggs, so sometimes moving to another one is the only hope for increased pay. Luckily, many states and localities have passed laws prohibiting hiring parties to ask this question. Check this list to see if that applies to your area.

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