Position: Sr. Project Manager for a software develpment firm.
Location and company the hotbed of conservative republicans.
Identified a candidate who looked perfect on paper, phone interview outstanding, candidate flown in for on site. Tall, good looking young man, personable to the max, dressed like he stepped out of GQ, outstanding background. Client loved him, made an offer 20% higher than they had every mentioned. Three months temp housing and a 15K hiring bonus plue physical move after his home sells in California. He accepted and was excited about moving to a smaller city from the West Coast.
As we discussed his move he mentioned that his wife was a "little person" and wanted to know what resources were available in the town. Also had a daughter who had the same condition. Not a problem resources were available as there is a medical school and specialists in that city.
Went in for a househunting trip. The wife was in fact a "little person" a dwarf not a midget. As was the baby. Ok, not a problem, company does not hire based on who someone is married to ever.
He calls me and says he is going to take his drug test but needs to tell me that he was so excited about his new job that he went to a party and smoked a little grass, something he does not do and it was stupid. I call my client HR and discuss. Ok, let's see what comes back.. Company is not that picky if it's just a little maryjane. Test comes back ok so we move on.
He reports for work. Says his wife is staying behind until the home sells , it's brand new so shouldn't be a problem. He moves into an extended stay hotel at company expense. All is going well, everybody loves him. Then he announces to several of his coworkers that he was gay but is now bisexual. Ok, not a problem but some eyebrows are beginning to arch a bit but no dis crimination here.
The day before his three month temp housing is to end he goes in and says that he has been unable to sell his home so is going to have to quit and move back to the West Coast. He is unable to pay back his hiring bonus because he had to use that to pay the balance of the down payment on his new home. And there is one other little problem. The feds have raided his hotel room and confiscated his computer because it had kidde porn on it and he may be facing federal charges..
He did in fact repay the hiring bonus over the next three years in monthly payments. Nobody knows if he went to the pen for kidde porn.
And by the by, his references were stellar. But, what you see may not be what you get, should it have derailed along the way. Maybe but it was one of those horror stories that everyone would like to forget. One of the sharpest candidates this company ever hired. Except he wasn't what he appeared to be.
I was going to submit a story about my military recruiting days, but after reading your tale...I got nuttin'!
That one is going in my book. One of several but by far the one that just kept on giving.
Sandra, that's an amazing story.
Worse one I had was a guy who was supposed to start January 1 so they invited him to the holiday party.
Where he proceeded to dirty dance with the Chairman of the Board's 15 yr old granddaughter.
WOW! The surprise that kept giving!
Goes to show you never know for absolute sure. Why we carry E&O insurance!
The VP of HR and i had a discussion after it was all over. He said, "Do you think that some of this might be explained by......i stopped him and said don't go there. It's over, all we can say is that he didn't misrepresent anything that we could have asked him about. Company didn't ask for a replacement as they felt we had done our job they had done theirs he had told the truth, such as it was. Just a strange duck. But he did save a huge account while he was there so nobody died, nobody, got beat up , nobody lost money and i hope he pled out. The VP of HR was just delighted that it was not a company computer that the feds consficated. Didn't require any E & O just a lot of ewwww from all the republicans and religious right.
Sandra I don't know how that can ever be topped. :) Thank goodness everyone (except the hire, I guess) came out without too many scars.
It sure livened up the republicans for a couple of months around the water cooler. I did hear that the company bible study group was praying for him. Maybe it worked. Nobody ever heard from him again but it was a great way to get his downpayment loan spread out over three years.
I have you beat but I'm not happy about.
I had an offer pending to Bruce Pardo in 2008 before he went on his massacre dressed as Santa...he killed 9 people and then himself. It was a classified project dealing with radar algorithms. His flight was all ready booked. We were, however, asked to backfill. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bruce_Pardo
Another guy that worked for me killed his wife and child. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neil_Entwistle
Moral of the story: Both were regular guys with shining references. Sorry, I may have taken this to a disturbing level.
I agree yours is more horrible than mine. Back in 2000 a fellow i worked with had a gig for 20 programmers he was all excited about one in Boston who was scheduled to come in to Amarillo, by god, Texas for onsite. He walked in my office with a strange look a few mornings later and asked if i had seen the news, it didn't register , i said yes why. He asked if i saw the deal about the guy who had gone back into the company and killed a bunch of people. It was in fact his great candidate. My coworker walked around for a week with a distant look and kept mumbling, "he seemed so normal, even for a bit tweaker, he seemed so normal"
Proving once again that working with people there is a big void as to what we can know and evaluate. That brings new meaning to "Bad Santa".
Wow. Just...wow. My recruiting experiences have not been as interesting, but I must say I am glad for that.
I think mind numbing and gastly are better adjectives. These are the stories that make one wish they were somewhere else, anyplace else.
Sandra... for once, I have no words.