Insight & Screening

insight and screening

Employee Insight & Screening

The screening of employees is something that every organization should make part of their recruitment process. In certain cases, post-employment screening can also come in useful, such as while considering promoting someone to the executive level. The purpose of background checks or employee screening is to ensure confidence in the hiring or promotion decision.

Employees are one of the most astute investments an organization can make. Investing in the wrong workforce can cost a company in more ways than one. These are a few reasons why employers should consider screening:

  • Fraud prevention: 50% of candidates tend to be untruthful on their job applications. It can be easy to hire someone unsuitable or unqualified for a particular job.
  • Data security: The way data is captured has changed with the introduction of GDPR and the growth of IoT. Criminal record checks are essential for companies that handle large volumes of consumer data.
  • Reputation management: Data theft, fraud, or regular bad customer service can tarnish an organization’s reputation. Damage control can be costly and avoided with preventative screening steps.
  • Workforce protection: Screenings are not carried out just to protect the organization and its clients and employees. Having a convicted felon or drug addict that secured the position by lying on the job application places your workforce at risk.
  • Legal compliance: Companies can avoid placing untrustworthy individuals at the executive level by screening them properly. The wrong hire could cause a lot of trouble at that level. Organizations also have a duty to ensure that the person they are hiring has the legal right to work.

Ways of obtaining Background Checks

Employee background checks encompass a candidate’s driving records, criminal records, financial records, and Social Security records. Various databases and registries, such as the terror watch list and sex offender registry, can be accessed. Sometimes, these need to be accessed at the local, county, state, and national levels.

Typically, employers hire an independent background screening company to get the job done. However, sometimes, they may like to keep things in-house and do a cursory check through search engines and social media sites. It’s vital to note that certain information may not be available on Google or Facebook.

Amateur screening cannot replace the information accessed by a third-party background screening service. Organizations should work with a background screening service that is FCRA-compliant if they want a more detailed background check. In some cases, it may be a necessity as well. Most courthouses across the US require individuals to show up at the courthouse to access documents. Background screening companies make use of court runners for such information.

Types of Screenings

There are several types of screening that encompass various different levels of checks. Few of the more popular candidate screenings include:

Criminal Records

Criminal background checks are usually required in situations where the organization needs to know whether a candidate has been incarcerated or convicted previously. They may want to know about particular crimes, such as embezzlement, felony, violent crimes, sex crimes, or fraud convictions before making a hiring decision.

Certain organizations may also have regulations in place against hiring certain categories of felons, such as those in healthcare or non-profit industries. Criminal records are usually acquired by accessing:

  • National criminal databases
  • Sex offender registries
  • County criminal courts
  • Domestic and global watch lists
  • Federal and state criminal records

Financial & Credit Checks

Credit and financial background checks look into an applicant’s credit history and may involve a credit report from Experian, Equifax, or TransUnion. Credit background checks help determine whether an applicant is fiscally responsible or not. This is especially important when hiring for positions that deal closely with finances or money.

Social Media Checks

Employers need to view their employees’ social media posts and accounts in today’s increasingly digital world. This can help attain a better understanding of a candidate’s thoughts, opinions, and beliefs. However, there are several pitfalls of relying solely on Facebook, Twitter, or other social media search.

Several platforms are below the radar. It may be necessary to access those and a complete understanding of a candidate’s attitude, personality, and behavior. It’s vital to note that criminal, education, and employment screening is necessary even if a candidate passes a social media check.

Identity & Address Verification

Identity thefts and frauds are on the rise. Identity and address verification allow a company to be confident in their hiring decision. They know the applicant is exactly who they say they are. Candidates are known to lie about their identity to gain employment. Verification involves Social Security number trace.

Education Checks

Remember that attending a college is not the same as graduating. The only way recruiters can accurately ascertain whether a candidate actually went to the colleges listed on the job application and completed the courses as claimed is by carrying out an education check. Academic verification can successfully confirm or deny the candidate’s education level.

Character Reference Checks

Character reference checks help attest to the interpersonal abilities and character of an applicant. Generally, companies require candidates to provide character references that are separate from employment references. These are usually provided by someone that knew the candidate long enough to offer an insight.

Personal character reference checks are among the most important tools used by recruiters to hire a candidate who will fit right in with the organizational culture. This service involves contacting the candidate’s personal references and seeking information concerning their conduct, reputation, and integrity.

Background Check Agencies

It can be difficult for an employer to know whom to trust without involving a third-party background screening company. The background check process is complex, and small businesses, in particular, may find the process intimidating.

These are a few things to look for in a background check agency:

  • Compliance
  • PBSA Accreditation
  • Flexibility
  • Quality
  • Transparency
  • Quick turnaround

The background screening process can take anywhere from a few hours for simple checks to a few days or weeks. The maximum amount of time is taken by international checks or where a particular database is inaccessible. Companies must find providers who don’t shy away from digging deep.