Worried - How might publicly available Employment Tribunal (withdrawn) hinder future hiring chances?

(18 Posts)
StacyFoxlove Fri 10-Jul-20 15:50:58


I'd love some imparital opinions on whether my withdrawn Employment Tribunal will hamper future employment chances. Specifically, if a future employee Googles me, they'll find the Tribunal decision. I'm worry that they'll just pass on my straight away.

As a brief history, a year ago I started Employment Tribunal proceedings against my (now former) employer. The matter was related to disability discrimination and I stand by my claims. I settled with my employer and subequently withdrew my claim (early this year).

The Employment Tribual Decision (withdrawal) is of course publicly available and I'm worried about how that might effect my future employement chances?

I'd welcome input from HR types and hiring managers. Do employers routinely Google potential candidates? Would a Tribunal Decision put employers off (how much would it put them off)? Should I bring the matter up during the hiring process?

With the added issue of Covid on the workforce, I worry that my chances of getting hired will now be even harder. I mean, why would an employer take a chance on a potential squeeky wheel? I'm not a squeeky wheel, I just stood my ground, but perception is everything.

Would really appreciate thoughts on others on this platform.

Thank you

OP’s posts: |
flowery Fri 10-Jul-20 16:00:42

Does it actually come up if you google your name? Have you tried it?

StacyFoxlove Fri 10-Jul-20 19:29:52

Hi @flowery,

If I just Google my name, it's burried several layers deep in Google. I couldn't find it in the first 5 results.

If I Google my name and my previous employers name, then it's the top result. I requested its removal from both Google and Bing but both refused.

Retrospectively I'm still happy to have stuck up for myself, but I would like to hear more about how this might hamper my chances from here on in.

Thank you for any quidance.

OP’s posts: |
underneaththeash Fri 10-Jul-20 21:13:18

I would always google someone I was employing, but it depends on what your case was - if it was an employer getting annoying with the amount of time you were taking off work, I certainly would not employ you.
If it was a case of them asking you to do something that you'd already said you can't do, working hours that you said you can't do or not providing equipment that allowed you to do your job - then that's not acceptable.

StacyFoxlove Fri 10-Jul-20 21:38:51

@underneaththeash I appreciate the candour. Would you ask about such cases during phone-screening interviews? Or, in reality, might you be more likely to just pass on the individual? I'm not judging at all, so please feel free to be direct.

I'm also interested to understand how rigourously employers Google potential employees and whether Background Check vendors would provide these results to employers?

OP’s posts: |
underneaththeash Fri 10-Jul-20 23:30:27

It depends on the role you're going for - I work in healthcare, so before children I was employing healthcare staff with appointments, so they couldn't work from home, if ill and we'd have to re-arrange a whole day of patients.
If you're doing a desk job, sickness is less important.
It also depends on your seniority.
TBH - just apply, you're probably a good candidate anyway given the current situation.

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Fri 10-Jul-20 23:33:45

Without wishing to hijack, the last four job applications I've put in have made a very big deal about removing names etc from the application form to remove bias. So would a google search always happen and at what point in the process would it take place?


BlueRaincoat1 Fri 10-Jul-20 23:36:38

Does the judgment not just say 'your name' v 'employer name ' - claim dismissed following withdrawal.

If it was settled, I wouldn't have thought any other details would be available?

BlueRaincoat1 Fri 10-Jul-20 23:41:17

I think it is a problem to be honest, I don't think it's fair that judgments are so googleable. It can put employees off bringing claims for
exactly the reason you've set out.

BlodwynBludd Fri 10-Jul-20 23:45:21

If you Google my name and my employer.name then the same comes back. Of the last 7 jobs I've applied for (very qualified) I've had one interview.

StacyFoxlove Sun 12-Jul-20 13:14:34

>> "I've put in have made a very big deal about removing names etc from the application form to remove bias"

That's very encouraging. Thank you.

>> "Does the judgment not just say 'your name' v 'employer name ' - claim dismissed following withdrawal. If it was settled, I wouldn't have thought any other details would be available?"

It states 'Jurisdiction code: Disability Discrimination'. It's not even a huge disability, it just mean't I couldn't continue working there when they attempted to change my terms. Terms I'd had for nearly 15 years.


>> ""Of the last 7 jobs I've applied for (very qualified) I've had one "
Do you think that's a standard hit rate, or do you think this is due to the public nature or the tribunal decision? I'd be curious to hear more about your experiences.

Thank you everyone, this is helpful.

OP’s posts: |
BlodwynBludd Sun 12-Jul-20 14:55:48

I think that the public nature of the employment tribunal has hindered me. I wish I hadn't gone through with it but at.the time I felt I had no option.

StacyFoxlove Thu 16-Jul-20 11:53:33

@BlodwynBludd I wish I'd thought more deeply about how I'd feel a year later too. Being public is one thing, indexed by Google and Bing is quite the other. I imagine we'd have better luck getting this information removed from Google/Bing if we'd committed crimes.

Good luck.

OP’s posts: |
BeccaB1981 Thu 16-Jul-20 15:13:51

OP as a hiring manager, no from what you describe it wouldn't be a problem.

it wouldn't influence any hiring decision either way.

the only time this would be a problem would be if it reflected badly on you e.g. you were accused of negligence, or had a professional body reprimanding you

but for the scenario you describe, nope, not a problem in any of the orgs i've worked in.

i also think you're focused on this too much - i might google a candidate's name but i certainly wouldn't google their old employer name or anything.

i wouldn't even bother googling the name if you had a name like "jane smith", it's too vague.

maybe you could take out your middle name or go by another shortening to help smoothe any risk of being googled if you still aren't comfortable? (known as Samantha Smith at the legal case, you write "sam smith" on your job application)

Radioheadrestart Thu 16-Jul-20 17:30:40

We are in the initial stages of recruiting we plan to redact all personal info - name, age, address, university for the first sift and telephone interview. We have had discussion about screening - we have been advised by our employment lawyer that any media searches need to be proportionate and relevant to the role and we should give the candidate the opportunity to defend an adverse result. We plan to follow best practice.

StacyFoxlove Wed 26-Aug-20 12:01:25

for an update incase other worried parties are in this position. I recently applied for, and was offered a senior role at a big company. I suspect this experience will very much depend on the company, but there's at least hope for us. That's a relief.

Thanks to everyone for your comments.

OP’s posts: |
daisychain01 Wed 26-Aug-20 17:28:23

@StacyFoxlove my public sector employer does not permit searches to dig into candidates past (effectively in an attempt to 'dig the dirt' on them) via internet search engines, as it gives rise to unconscious (or indeed conscious) bias. In fact staff have to undergo annual "Unconscious Bias" awareness training to ensure anyone who undertakes recruitment activities, does so in an ethical and fair manner - i.e. we do not allow extraneous information to cloud our opinions, we rely on a candidate's CV and in their integrity.

A key thing to highlight and reassure you of, is that you did nothing wrong in seeking justice of your former employer and crucially, you are under no obligation to disclose at any future time to a prospective employer that you sought to take your employer to tribunal, especially as they were discriminating against you.

I would say, go ahead with confidence in applying for new jobs. As they say on MN "style it out", on the basis you have great skills that an employer is looking for, so focus on the benefits you will bring them. We all have a past, you shouldn't worry about being overlooked - ensure your CV tells them everything they need to know,

To my mind, it's a big red flag if an employer is worried about someone exercising their Rights in law to go to tribunal to seek justice - in any case, the months and weeks leading up to Tribunal take courage and resilience, which are themselves highly sought after skills.

daisychain01 Wed 26-Aug-20 17:30:20

Apologies just noted you updated earlier, hopefully my comments are still helpful.

Well done getting your new job.

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