Seems to have been a long time since the last blog entry. Life has been full. Sorry!

Anyway, something from last week, not the first time it’s happened, which we wanted to touch on.

A candidate came in to see us and register to be put forward for a specific vacancy. I chatted with him for an hour or so. Clearly competent and experienced Infra / Systems Manager / Senior Techie looking for a new role. We had no hesitation in putting him forward to the employer – within an hour of his leaving our office.

Recieved an email back from that (large) employer’s HR manager within two minutes (I do prefer dealing with professional HR people) – it read “Thanks Steve, but we have already received this CV from another agency.”.

Wow. The candidate had told me directly that it was only from us that he had heard of this opportunity, that was why he had come to us.

I thought maybe I had got it wrong, so I emailed him. And got a reply confirming that I had got it right.

Some other agency had put the candidate forward to the employer, without informing him, without giving him the opportunity to polish his CV for the role, without even checking that he would be happy to have his details sent to that employer.

Most experienced IT candidates – that’s you folks who we try to find jobs for – will be very familiar with data protection principles in general, even if you’re not technical experts on GDPR. No point in labouring this, IT folk generally understand GDPR and Data Protection. Corporate lawyers generally understand GDPR and Data Protection, but sadly many business folk do not, and that includes many recruitment agencies.

In this instance the agency which submitted the candidate broke the law:- the candidate has a valid basis of complaint to the Information Commissioner, a valid basis for a legal action against the agency, and a potential employer would have been in the uncomfortable position of having been sent personal data without consent, which might then have to be excised from all their IT systems under the “right to be forgotten” – if the candidate even knew that their data had been unlawfully shared.

Please be careful about who you give your personal data to. We have several senior candidates on our books who have only given their CVs to us, so we can keep a watching brief for suitable opportunities, because they don’t want their details or job hunt to be broadcast to the wide world, and they don’t trust recruitment agencies. The case above is a prime example of why.