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There's only one way to avoid making the same hiring mistake the SABC made...

by , 19 February 2014
The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) is in the news once again and it's not for good reasons. On Monday, the Public Protector Thuli Madonsela released a scathing report on the parastatal. What caught our attention the most is the finding that the public broadcaster's acting chief operating officer (COO) has a FAKE matric certificate! Here's what you can do to avoid being duped when you hire...

Earlier this month, we reported that an independent skills audit report on the SABC by consultants PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) found that 104 staff have no personnel file.

Now, there's a fresh scandal at the SABC.

A Public Protector's report into the SABC, titled 'When governance and ethics fail' has found that Hlaudi Motsoeneng (COO) faked his matric certificate.

According to an iol report, in his application for the COO post, Motsoeneng claimed he'd matriculated at Metsimantsho High School in QwaQwa, Free State, when he was 23. But this wasn't the case. In fact, failed matric twice.

Madonsela says that, 'Mr Motsoeneng would have never been appointed in 1995 had he not lied about his qualification and he repeated that lie in 2003 when he applied for the post of executive producer: current affairs.'

The report also found that former SABC chairman Dr Ben Ngubane acted irregularly when he ordered that qualification requirements for the appointment for the COO position be altered to remove certain qualifications – tailor-making it for Motsoeneng, reports iol.

This is a BIG no-no. Make sure it doesn't happen in your company.

How do you do this?

Conduct thorough reference checks.


FSP Business reveals: 


Avoid an SABC-like hiring mistake by conducing reference checks

The Practical Guide to Human Resources Management says you must ensure all your hiring decisions are backed up by planning and deliberate effort.

So make sure you carry out thorough reference checks on potential employees - this includes verifying previous employment and qualifications.

Just keep in mind that you're only allowed to check job-related information.

Here's a useful tip you can use when it comes to reference checks

It's a good idea to get permission from the candidate to conduct background checks.

Include this permission statement in your application forms to show you have the candidate's permission to look into his past employment and background.

HR Future says that, 'between 14% and15% of all qualifications checked by background screeners turned out to be fake and this included both government and the private sector.'
The site warns that 'by employing candidates who had lied about their qualifications, employers were denying honest job seekers who took the time and trouble to achieve matric certificates or degrees the opportunity of finding gainful employment.'

Don't fall into the same trap; conduct thorough reference checks to ensure you're employing honest and deserving applicants.

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