8 Things You Can’t Do as an HR Professional

Being an HR professional is a great career path. You get to help shape the culture of your company with every hire you make. But there are some important limitations that every HR professional should be aware of. If you’re not following ethical standards and doing what’s right, then you may end up doing a lot of harm and potentially getting yourself into legal hot water. Here are 8 things you can’t do as an HR professional.

8 Things You Can't Do as an HR Professional


Don’t lie. Don’t lie to your employees, don’t lie to your bosses, don’t lie to your colleagues, and don’t even think about lying to the government. Lying is one of the fastest ways for an HR professional to get fired and/or get arrested. Even if you don’t think anyone will ever find out about it, the potential consequences are too great.

Only Require Background Checks for Some People

If background checks are required for some employees but not others, you could be at risk. Only giving some people background checks could be perceived as discriminatory behavior. It’s best to simply background check everyone to cover yourself from any perceptions of discrimination. Plus, if everyone on your staff has passed a background check, they can all be eligible for all the roles within the company. The best thing you can do is get bulk background checks because you’ll save some money instead of purchasing them one at a time.

Tell Someone They Can’t Have a Reference

You can’t tell someone they can’t get a reference. When you give out a reference, you can’t give any information about an employee’s salary, performance, or disciplinary record. From an HR perspective, you should simply verify they worked for you and the role they served in while they were with you.

Ignore Clear Performance Issues

You may be able to spot performance issues clearly, but not all managers can. In many cases, as an HR professional, you’ll need to help the manager see that there is an issue and then guide them through the process of addressing it. This includes helping employees improve their performance, retraining them if necessary, and giving them positive feedback as they do a better job.

Force an Employee to Take Their Vacation Days

In general, you can’t force an employee to take vacation days. At some companies, the number of accrued days off can be capped out, and then in order to accrue more, the employee would need to take time off. From an HR perspective, you might send out notifications to employees who are not using their accrued time to remind them to put in for time off. Vacation time is important, and if they don’t use their allotted days, it can be used as sick leave or other types of paid time off.

Give an Employee the Wrong Amount of Wages

Payroll is a complex system, and mistakes can be costly. While software certainly simplifies things, there are still glitches that can happen. As an HR professional, you need to understand the regulations surrounding payroll to ensure that all of your staff get paid accurate wages. If there is a mistake, you need to ensure that those wages are paid to them immediately, instead of waiting until the next pay cycle.

Hire People Based on Your Preferences, Not Company Needs

The first reason to hire people is that your company needs them. Even as an HR professional, you don’t have the authority to hire friends or family just because you care for them. It’s important to consider a person’s skills, experience, education, and cultural fit for your company. If you’re going to spend time, money, and resources training someone, you should make sure that they will connect with their new work environment.

Ignore Ethical Standards

Don’t ignore ethics in your HR role. HR professionals have a duty of care to the company. They must support the business in its goals, ensure that employees are treated fairly, and protect confidential information. This means that some of the things you can do as an employee are not allowed for HR professionals.

You can’t use your position for personal gain. For example, you can’t give yourself a raise or approve work-from-home requests for others when they don’t meet company policy. You also need to be ethical and fair in your dealings with employees. For instance, it’s unacceptable to discriminate against someone based on their race or gender or how they dress. You also can’t use personal information you learn about someone against them.

FG Editorial Team
The Founder's Guide Team - Asian Associates with dynamic elements out to make a change.Thank you for visiting our site! If you do have any questions or inquiry, feel free to contact us through our links and please don't forget to follow our social media accounts. It would be our pleasure to help you in any way we can. Always Remember: "Proceed to Succeed". Hoping to hear from you soon!

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