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All About Recruitment




The basic recruitment conducted for a PERM application must follow instructions for advertising, SWA job order placement, and in-house notification to employees. Outreach recruitment to layoffs is also required of all job offers, non-professional and professional. Since Professional recruitment is an expansion of non-professional recruitment, we must first learn how to distinguish occupations that are professional from non-professional and then follow a guide to recruitment for each of these types of job offers.

Professional recruitment requires three additional recruitment steps selected from a menu of ten options.

This chapter is organized into Introduction to Recruitment, Is the job non-professional or professional, Notice of Filing and In-House Media (both forms of notice to the public but also seemingly part of the recruitment process); 30-day job orders at the State Work Force Agency; Newspaper Ads, Additional Requirements for professionals choosing three out of ten special, professional recruitment means. See additional comments below on the DOL’s special task force to focus on job recruitment for Iranian and Iraqi Refugees. What follows is a complete analysis about recruitment.



Introduction to Recruitment: Brief Overview

All PERM applications must follow the same three basic recruitment steps: newspaper advertising, placement of a job order in the State Work Agency and accessibility at the work place to a Notice of Filing and other in-house media. There are some distinctions between the requirements for non-professional and professional newspaper ads. Professional positions require three additional recruitment steps beyond the basics.



Is the Job Non-Professional or Professional?

There are distinct recruitment requirements for non-professional and professional PERM job offers. The definition of professional used by DOL is unlike the ones used by DHS in H-1B practice or assignment of preference categories.



Notice of Filing and In-house Media

Notice of Filing is a hybrid document that provides actual notice to the public of the employer’s intention to file a PERM application and a form of recruitment that encourages the employer’s work force to apply for the position or refer other US workers before a final determination is made. The Notice subsection of the PERM Rule is complicated, and many PERM applications have been denied, reconsidered and appealed for failure to meet the regulatory requirements. Note that there are special Notice issues for occupations on Schedule A, College and University Teachers, Sheepherders, Domestic Household Workers, and Supervised Recruitment – all of which are explained below.



SWA 30-Day Job Orders

Each State Workforce Agency maintains a job order bank for use by job seekers. PERM recruitment includes the placement of a 30-day job order in the State Workforce Agency (SWA) with the details of the employment opportunity. State and federal templates for job opportunities do not always correspond, resulting in denials by the certifying officer.




During PERM recruitment, the employer must contact workers laid off in the past six months whose job was in the same or related occupation to offer them the job.



Newspaper Advertising Requirements

Newspaper ads are the cornerstone of applications for labor certification. The regulatory language is almost identical for non-professional and professional ads. Selection of an appropriate publication and content often results in denials.



Recruitment for Non-Professional Jobs

Recruitment for non-professional jobs must include newspaper advertising, a SWA job order, and in-house notification to employees. The regulation for newspaper advertising differs slightly from the regulation for professional advertising.



Recruitment for Professional Jobs

Recruitment for professional jobs must include newspaper advertising, a SWA job order, three of ten additional forms of recruitment, and a notice of filing, including in-house notification to employees when appropriate.



Ten Additional Professional Recruitment Steps

Choose Three out of Ten

Professional occupations require three forms of additional recruitment chosen from the following: One of the additional steps may consist solely of activity that took place within 30 days of the filing of the application. None of the steps may have taken place more than 180 days prior to filing the application.

Professional recruitment was seen as markedly different from non-professional recruitment. While the latter follows traditional labor certification dogma, recruitment for professionals was customized to more recent trends in job searches.

Whereas previously two newspaper advertisements sufficed, the ten professional recruitment steps are varied and diverse to accommodate a larger number of fields of endeavor.

Statistics show that at least 80% of PERM applications are filed for professional positions, a fact which explains the emphasis on professional recruitment in the PERM Rule.

As explained elsewhere in this book, the norms for professional recruitment are flexible and leave some discretion to employers. Many issues which are not clearly stated in the instructions provided by the PERM Rule have been clarified by the Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals.

Safe harbor paradigms for some of the professional recruitment steps now exist, while others have not yet been clarified. Of the ten available options, Job Fairs, On-Campus Recruiting, Campus placement offices, Ethnic newspapers, radio and television advertisements remain loosely defined, while the remaining steps have been clarified by BALCA, FAQ’s and other forms of agency guidance.
Some of the major points of disagreement is the exact language that needs to be placed in the recruitment step, the nexus between the recruitment and the job opportunity in the PERM application and the methods of documentation of the recruitment.

Employers must look at the regulatory language for each proposed form of recruitment with great care and be familiar with the decisions of the agency which are available for guidance.

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