Most interesting HR stories of the week

Americans still piling on the errors:

Are job applicants getting complacent? According to new research published in e-learninginside.com, a whopping 60% of resumes contain at least one spelling mistake, while one-in-ten is peppered with at least five or more. Of the nearly 100,000 resumes analyzed by Adzuna, only a third contained no mistakes at all. Texans made the most mistakes, followed by those in California, New York and Florida. By contrast, job seekers in Alaska and North Dakota make the fewest foul-ups. But could there be a simple answer why? It’s possible Americans have their spellcheckers set to ‘British English’ rather than US English. The research found one of the most frequent types of error was using UK spellings – ie organisation, behaviour and programme.

The machines are coming – and they’re out on patrol:

It reads like something from a book about a dystopian future. But according to reports, robotic dogs have begun trails patrolling the US-American border. In a sure sign that automation is on its way, The Department of Homeland Security claims the ‘dogs’ (officially known as Automated Ground Surveillance Vehicles), greatly reduce real employees’ exposure to life-threatening hazards and are also able to better cope with the harsh border terrain. Each one of the 100-pound robots has a number of cameras and sensors mounted on them, transmitting real-time data to humans operating them via laptop or hand-held remote. Tests have already seen them walk up hills, down ravines and over rocks, as well as work in high heat and low oxygen conditions. Opponents claim the move militarizes the region, adding additional tensions to communities there.

Almost 90% of states are yet to get back to pre-Covid employment levels:

The pandemic recovery is supposed to be starting, but according to data published by Bankless Times, it’s happening slower than some might have expected when it comes to employment levels. It reports its own research that suggests 88% of US states have yet to get back to their pre-pandemic levels of employment. It also predicts two-thirds of states still won’t have attained those employment levels, even by June time. The data finds only six states have recovered all the jobs lost by Covid (Utah, Arizona, Montana, Texas, Georgia, and Idaho), while the North Eastern and Great Lakes region States are likely to continue to have larger pre-pandemic employment gaps.

Female footballers win landmark equal pay case:

A long-running legal case over equal pay has ended in victory for female soccer stars. The case centered around the right for women to be paid the same as men, and was launched in 2016, when five U.S. Women’s National Team players filed an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission complaint over inequality in pay and treatment. The verdict now means U.S. Soccer will pay men and women at an equal rate in the future in all friendlies and tournaments, including the World Cup. The current disparity is pay between male and female footballers is huge. FIFA awarded $400 million in prize money to the 32 teams playing in the 2018 men’s World Cup. By comparison, FIFA awarded just $30 million to the 24 teams at the 2019 women’s World Cup.

Former offenders key to skills shortages, claims report:

Employers need to re-evaluate their attitude to former offenders, according to a new report which reveals more than half of unemployed men in their 30s in America have a history of being arrested or convicted of a crime. According to The Hill researchers found that by the age of 35, about 64% of unemployed men in America had been arrested, while 46% had been convicted of a crime. It argues employers should take note and make changes to how they address criminal histories on job applications by trying new, sophisticated prediction models that seek to understands the tendency of a convicted criminal to reoffend. Yahoo! News claims too many employers have been screening these people out, and that men with criminal records hold the key to solving the U.S labor shortage.

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New Senate bill aims to introduce pay transparency:

A California Senate bill has been introduced that seeks to require all companies with more than 100 employees to publicly report how much they pay their workers. Under the terms of the proposed bill, firms would be required to include the median and average hourly rates for each type of employee – temporary, contract, and contingent workforce – broken down by gender, ethnicity and job category. According to the bill’s sponsor, state Sen. Monique Limón, the aim is to “identify the gender and race-based pay disparities by requiring pay transparency at every stage of the employment process, from hiring to promotion, and ongoing employment.” Nationally women earn 82% of what men do, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But in California, women earn just 79 cents on the dollar.

Google says it’s safe to return to the office:

Google – which has previously said it expects 20% of its staff to stay working from home – has announced this week that its offices are officially back open for business. Its real estate VP told San Francisco Bay Area employees that the Covid-19 risk had now fallen low enough to allow it to relax rules on social distancing, vaccines, testing and mask wearing. Perks, such as massages and access to informal spaces in the office, will also be back. According to CNBC the announcement comes as the company prepares to require most employees to come into physical offices at least three days a week for a “hybrid” work model. The San Francisco Bay Area has the highest concentration of Google offices, with dozens of buildings across several cities in the region, including its Mountain View headquarters. In the week before the announcement, 30% of Google staff worked in its offices but any in-office working has so-far been voluntary.

 

Peter Crush is the interim editor of TLNT. He’s an award-winning journalist based in London, and he writes exclusively about the ever-changing world of work.

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