Essay 51 – Employers sometimes ask people’s personal information

GT Writing Task 2 (Essay Writing) Sample # 51

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Write about the following topic:

Employers sometimes ask people applying for jobs for personal information, such as their hobbies and interests, and whether they are married or single. Some people say that this information may be relevant and useful. Others, however, disagree.

Discuss both these views and give your own opinion.

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.


Model Answer:

It is not uncommon that job seekers’ personal information like pastimes, interests, and nuptial status are asked by companies. Some people claim that this information is pertinent and it may come in handy, yet other people refute the idea. In the case, I am of the opinion that this information should not be required because it can cause discrimination.

To commence with, employers ask applicants to provide more than just academic or professional information for assessing the prospective candidates so that they can select the right person for the appropriate position. Hobbies and interests are the keys to understanding someone’s personality, and knowing the candidates’ personality is important for a corporation so that they know the behaviour pattern, emotion, soft skills and paradigm of thought through the personality. For instance, whether the candidate prefers to work alone or prefer to work in a group could be an indicator of someone’s performance. Thus, this information assists the employers in deciding which position suits the candidate.

On the contrary, personal information like hobbies, activities and interests, many a time, is deliberately exaggerated so as to impress the employers. A recent survey reveals that 65 per cent of candidates provide overrated information. In fact, such information throws doubt on authenticity, in which case, it is of little practical value. Besides, information like marital status and parental status can cause prejudice. Employers can take the view that a married man is more sensible than his counterparts, or a married woman would be less dedicated to her job. In consequence, many applicants can face discrimination while looking for jobs. Furthermore, in the case of hobbies and interests, subjective bias can take place. That is to say, if a candidate’s interest matches the interviewer’s interest, then there is a good possibility that the applicant will be recruited based on the subjective judgment of the interviewer.

To recapitulate, while personal information, for example, hobbies and interests, and marital status, is important as they reflect someone’s personality, it can also cause stereotype. In my view, giving private information while applying for a job should be prohibited because it brings forth discrimination and bias.

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