Josephine's Personnel Services, Inc.

Employees & Job Applicants – Law Changes in Recruiting & Hiring for 2013 (Part 1)

August 12th, 2013
Do you know California law?

Do you know California law?

Searching for quality employees can be a tough feat and as if it wasn’t already a challenging process, the addition or revision of recruiting and hiring laws within the state of California make it even more difficult.

In this multiple post series, we will introduce the changes that occurred in the recruiting and hiring laws during the 2013 calendar year. This includes but is not limited to, new wage information rules for temporary service employees, hiring reporting and more. Today, we begin by introducing the changes relevant to the ever growing technological resource we know as personal social media accounts.

Social media is part of our everyday lives, and while every professional publication or development seminar has told us the importance of keeping our social media profiles professionally acceptable, the idea of social media privacy rights are often times overlooked, until now.

Effective as of January 1st, 2013, employers must follow new rules in relation to requesting social media account information from job applicants both internally and externally.

Social media accounts as defined by the law are “an electronic service or account, or electronic content, including, but not limited to, videos, still photographs, blogs, video blogs, podcasts, instant and text messages, email, online services or accounts, or Internet web site profiles or locations.” This can include, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Vine, Path, Foursquare and any other site including one or more of the aforementioned aspects of online information. As an employer or hiring manager, you should be aware of the following changes when conducting interviews with potential employees and/or candidates.

Personal account login information: According to California state law, it is now prohibited to request or require the personal login information to any social media platform associated with a job applicant. Accessing an applicants personal social media profile is strictly prohibited.

Access to personal social media: While conducting an interview, it is now disallowed to request that a candidate access their personal social media pages or profiles in your presence. This is important to keep in mind when talking with new applicants as it is considered a violation of privacy.

Disclose any personal social media web addresses: According to the new hiring and recruiting laws of California, it is illegal to require job applicants and current employees to divulge any personal social media handles, web addresses or usernames. This includes Twitter handles, Facebook addresses, Instagram pages and LinkedIn profile links among others. Keep in mind that exceptions to all of the above mentioned changes can occur in relation to workplace investigations and office issued communication devices.

Understanding California recruiting and hiring laws is an essential component in effectively managing growth within the workplace. Here at Josephine’s Professional Staffing, we have a vast knowledge of California employment laws and programs and are prepared to use that knowledge to benefit you and your business. Contact us today to learn more and be sure to check back next week for part two of our blog post series on law changes related to recruiting and hiring.

About Josephine’s Professional Staffing

Founded in 1988, Josephine’s Professional Staffing has nearly 25 years of business success and is continuously committed to providing superior quality staffing solutions to companies in the Bay Area. We proactively and consistently search for avenues to provide staffing solutions in the field of administrative, accounting, healthcare, light industrial, technical and professional services while taking pride in each of our employees. Josephine’s Professional Staffing is a Certified Small Business Enterprise (SBE), Underutilized Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (UDBE), and Minority Woman-Owned Business Enterprise (MWOBE). We can be reached at or 4008.943.0111 and are located at 2158 Ringwood Avenue, San Jose, CA 95131.

Photo Credit: Prayitno

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