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Business as usual- or do I have a case? Oklahoma

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  • Business as usual- or do I have a case? Oklahoma

    I was working at a Fortune 500 "Top 100 places to Work" (Ha,Ha) job. When I was hired I was told that promotion in the Co. was base on Certification's. Myself and another tech were both equally certified, and the job description for a lead position listed a certification neither of us held. I studied for and passed my test on the first try and got the promotion. The other person failed his test, but still got the promotion, pending he would pass the test in the future. About six months later, during the store review from the white ties, The store got written up because Shop-to-do's weren't getting done in a timely fashion. I got demoted from my position, and pay cut. The other person got my job and maintained his higher salary. None of this was mentioned on my Annual review about two weeks prior, as a matter of fact I had gotten a good review. (Three) more techs were hired, (Funny none were offered when I was in charge!). Two more techs were promoted to leads without the certifications. These two passed their test at a latter date. The one that got my job, told me a year later, he had failed numerous times, and he was not even registered for the upcoming test but still receiving the Lead pay. Now for a Co. that post non-discrimination in promotion or compensation that seems to me like this isn't the case. I had to pass the test before I was eligible for the promotion. I understand At-will employment means come when they say, and do what tell you they need done. If they post a sign that says Equal rights, and have job descriptions that list requirements for positions, are all employees required to meet the standards before promotion?

  • #2
    A company saying X is required to do a job, setting what is known as an MQ, a minimum qualification, is only a guideline. The company is not required to follow its own guidelines by law, unless either the minimum qualification is set by statute (e.g. they aren't going to make Jethro Bodine and his sixth grade education a brain surgeon just because his Uncle Jed is rich, since your state undoubtedly has laws setting the MQ for practicing medicine) or they violate some other employment laws such as title VII by doing so. The problem is when companies do decide to ignore their own guidelines they open themselves up to the very kinds of issues you raise, which at the very least raise questions of fairness and affect employee morale, and at the very worst raise questions about possible discrimination regardless of whether there was any illegal discrimination.

    Now, if you can show evidence that the company took this action because of race, sex, religion, or any of the other statutorily protected characteristics, then you have the basis to claim this is illegal discrimination. Otherwise, while while it may be least to is no more illegal discrimination than if you decide to buy a Whopper instead of a Big Mac. Choosing a whopper is discriminatory toward Mickey D's but doesn't give them the legal basis to sue you.

    Another aspect of MQs is its a lot easier legally to broaden them and open things up to more people than it is to narrow them and restrict it to less people. They could run afoul of employment laws if they said, "Okay we'll require the certification for everyone, but for males only we might over look it." Or they could also run into trouble if they said, "well you only really need this one certification to do the job, but we like PhDs so we'll require a doctorate too." (This would likely cause disparate impact on the applicant pool and the MQ of a doctorate is not supported by business necessity.)

    But, for them to say, "we require the certification, but as long as this other guy is doing the job well and continues to try to pass the test, we will let this slide for now" does not on the surface violate employment laws unless something else is the real reason, such as race, sex, etc. You were not demoted becuase you failed the passed the test...but because "Shop-to-do's weren't getting done in a timely fashion" (whatever a shop-to-do is). I guess as long as his shop-to-do's are timely, they're willing to cut him some slack.
    Last edited by The Masked Poster; 06-25-2009, 12:41 PM.
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    • #3
      your situation has nothing to do with "equal rights" prescribed by law. If you didnt get promoted because of your race, religion, gender, national origin, written and signed contract stating all what you were told,then you would have a case.
      Despite what you were told nothing illegal here. Did you say things somone above you didnt like? Piss someone off?
      Based on what you said, and lacking all mentioned above, someone there simply doesnt like you, or would rather have someone in the position they feel more appealing. What they are doing is playing games trying to make it look like its YOUR fault. Ever wonder why no one ever approaches you in the process of when things go wrong? Ever wonder why they just tell you things went wrong rather then tell you before results? Ever wonder why they just do not sit ya down, look you in the eyes, and discuss things? Come on plain and simple. They are fabricating nonsense as they dont have the balls to tell you how they really feel. You can have a 100 certificates and all positive results. But it;s their playground and will do the most obvious nonsense to direct all fault to u.
      Your options in the workplace are the three "L's"- Live with it, Lobby for change, or Leave. Screaming for an attorney will do no good most of the time.


      • #4
        When I was hired I was told that promotion in the Co. was base on Certification's. Were you told that promotions were based solely on certifications? If so, that would be a foolish business decision. People can have certifications and degrees up the wazoo but still do a lousy job and/or not have any leadership skills. In fact, they've demoted you.

        Certification or not, apparently your employer doesn't think you're promotable. If you haven't done so, I suggest you schedule time to speak with your supervisor to discuss what you need to do to progress in the organization.

        If they post a sign that says Equal rights, and have job descriptions that list requirements for positions, are all employees required to meet the standards before promotion? No. FYI, "equal rights" has nothing to do with your situation.


        • #5
          I agree with the other answers. However, if the OP wants to do their own research, the following federal agency is in charge of enforcing the law in question.

          "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
          Philip K. **** (1928-1982)


          • #6
            Please identify on what basis you believe you were discriminated against:

            National Origin
            Age (over 40 only)
            Other characteristic protected by the state of Oklahoma
            The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.


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