I've recently had a pretty bad experience with a new hire. While not top dog, I am second in command where I work. When my boss is out of town, I'm in charge. When he's busy, I make the decisions.
A couple months ago we hired a new electrical engineer to help out. We told him clearly what was to be expected, what he'd be doing, etc. He'd have to handle drawing machine schematics, wiring new machines and upgrades to existing machines, and troubleshooting/repairing existing machines. Pretty basic industrial electrician stuff. He seemed pretty enthusiastic about it.
Flash forward a week after he started working. We had our first major break down. Number one machine in the plant stops working, top priority to fix. We stay til about 8pm (3 hours over time) to get the machine running. The next morning, 8am rolls around, I look around... new hire is no where to be found. 9am, we call him. He says that all that overtime really did a number on his back and he had a hard time sleeping that night. Ok, what ever, he'll be in a little late? No, he just didn't show up at all that day.
Over the next month or so, we try to show him how things work, he doesn't seem to care. We have him repair simple things (stuff we give summer interns to do) and he does them wrong continuously, even after being shown how to do it right numerous times. We have him go over some old machines to update schematics, he spends days looking in the electrical panels, taking pictures, but in the end gets almost nothing done as far as updated prints goes.
Near the end of his second month, he starts missing days. No calls, just doesn't show up. He'd come in the next day with some excuse. Then last week he comes in on Monday. Then Tuesday doesn't show up. Then Wednesday doesn't show up. No show Thursday, No show Friday. By this time, the company policy is taking into effect. If you miss three days of work in a row without any attempt at notification, you are considered to have voluntarily abandoned your job. The following week, (this week), nothing. I contact a family member of his (a person I knew). He says "Oh, he's out of state on an interview. He said he gave his two weeks notice and quit". No... he just stopped showing up.
Now, I'm sure this person is not going to list us as a place of employment on their resume (seems he'd be stupid if he did). But in a case like this, if someone did contact me as a reference for this person... what could I legally say about them? I don't know what you are allowed to say about a past employee. I have many bad things that can be said about him, and they are all true. Since they are facts (not opinion based or how you feel about the person) can negative things be said about a person to their potential future employers?
Edited, Apr 12th 2012 10:10pm by TirithRR