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Employment Laws Things to Ask & Not Ask

Taking on new workers can be both exciting and challenging for your portable restroom business. While you want to get the best help you can find, you must ensure that you adhere to state and federal employment laws throughout the hiring process.

Employment laws not only protect your current employees, but prospective ones, too. Remember that all the people you interview have the right to privacy, respect, and the protection of the law, whether or not they’ll end up working for you. We’ve compiled some tips on employment law to help you understand the types of questions that can and cannot be asked when interviewing. Let’s begin with what not to ask.

Things Not to Ask

All applicants for your open position(s) have the right to privacy and to not be discriminated against. This means that you cannot ask someone about their race, nationality, religion, disability, gender, or if they are pregnant. Whether or not an applicant has children, if they’re married, or in a relationship is also not for an interviewer to know.

A person’s ability to do the advertised job is not based on any of these factors, but rather on their own qualities. For every job in the world, some people will be more suited than others. How you can determine this suitability is dealt with below.

Things to Ask

Certain jobs within the portable restroom industry will have certain requirements. These are referred to as the ‘bona fide occupational qualifications’ that a candidate must have. While you can’t ask questions that may be discriminatory, you may ask questions that are directly related to the tasks the successful candidate will be carrying out.

  • Specific requirements: If you’re hiring a driver, for instance, you can ask about their driving record, types of vehicles driven, whether they have any tickets or accidents in the last 5 years, and their familiarity with the service area. You may also inquire about their DOT physical examination and whether they can obtain a record of it. If certain qualifications or educational diplomas are needed for a role, like bookkeeping, you may inquire about these. You are also allowed to ask for date of birth for commercial drivers.
  • Necessary abilities: While you can’t ask a candidate if they have any disabilities, for work that involves manual labor you may ask them about their ability to do certain tasks, like lift 50 lbs. regularly or haul a trailer.
  • Time availability: If a role demands weekend work, while you cannot ask the interviewee if they have children or if their religion will affect this, you may ask them generally about their availability on weekends.
  • Legal right to work: While you cannot ask a candidate their country of origin or heritage, you may ask if they are a U.S. citizen or legally eligible to work in the United States.
  • Criminal records: With criminal records, state laws differ on whether you can inquire during the hiring process, so make sure you check your state’s regulations.
  • Previous experience: Get a sense of the applicant’s experience by asking about previous roles, like times when they encountered a problem in another job and how they overcame it.

Remember that a person’s faith, race, gender, or nationality does not affect their working ability. You want to quiz a candidate on their own specific abilities in relation to the role. Do this, and you’ll find the right fit for the job!

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