Critical Guidelines Everyone Needs to Know Before Hiring Anyone
Most employers realize that running employment screening background checks isn't just an option, it's mandatory. Whether you are a large corporation or a small business, the consequences of hiring the wrong person can come in the form of high turnover costs or worse yet, lawsuits from negligent hiring that average around $500,000 should someone get hurt. Most of us still don't like to think about people doing harm to ourselves or others, but the reality is that we live in a country with one of the highest rates of financial crimes, including embezzlement, fraud, and theft. And that's just the beginning.
Let's look at just a few statistics regarding employee theft - which is, according to the FBI, the fastest growing crime in the U.S.
- $50 billion dollars are lost annually due to employee theft and fraud according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. As a result, 20% of all businesses fail due to the same reason.
-"White Collar Crime: Loss Prevention through Internal Control", a report released by Ernst & Young, states that companies lose 1% to 2% of their sales to crime. Employees commit most of these crimes or are in collusion.
In addition, employers have to face negligent hiring lawsuits, sexual harassment claims, and workers compensation fraud -- and these are just a few of the liabilities in today's hiring environment.
Some companies have faced the worst nightmare in hiring decisions because as a result of not having a policy of running employment screening background checks. One horrifying case happened to an Arizona Fitness Club that hired someone who later raped and murdered a female patron while she was using the sauna. No lawsuit settlement can fix this kind of situation for the company or the people who lost their loved one.
Not only do you want to avoid hiring criminals, you also want to hire the right candidate who is most qualified for the job. All of this information can be ascertained through a proper background check from a company that knows how to develop professional screening for an employment background.
Here are some Critical tips for Choosing the Right Employment Screening Company
1. An important aspect of hiring a firm to provide your employment screening is longevity in the business. In this industry, experience really counts. You want a company with a track record that can be verified with numerous references from clients who have had varied situations over the years. Also make sure they have professional memberships in organizations such as ASIS, SHRM, PIHRA, NPRRA, and NAPBS.
2. If you are not an employment law firm, and most of us aren't, you'll need a screener who is well versed in the laws involving the background screening process. It helps, if the firm you hire has an acute knowledge of negligent hiring. If an officer of the company is an Expert Witness, you hit the jackpot because these people keep current on what lawsuits are moving through the courts and that is information that can keep you out of court. It is the expert witness who exposes the shortcomings of any hiring loophole which created the environment for the negligently hired employee to have come aboard in the first place!
3. Your potential firm needs an intimate, thorough and long-term knowledge of the Fair and Accurate Transactions Act (FACTA), and the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). They also need the ability to testify for you in a court of law if need be- or even better, keep your out of court in the first place.
4. Does your prospective screener have thorough knowledge and an understanding of current HR Management systems? How about corporate Due Diligence programs or Factual Employment Screening programs that train people to find fraudulent applications and false identities? Can your vendor help keep you from unwanted litigation? Unless you or someone in your company is an expert in employment law, you are putting your company at significant risk.
Keep in mind that if you are using any of the multitudes of online databases that have become available recently, it's less likely you are protected. Not only do these online service providers increase your risk of exposure, they may even add to it. Let's take a small but important example. Let's say you are currently using an employment screener who does not require you to provide a signed release for each applicant. That sounds relatively harmless, doesn't it?
But the truth is these companies have had you waive liability to them when you signed up for an account so they could avoid the time and effort it takes involved in this critical step. In the case of an audit, your company is responsible for producing a signed application and therefore liable if you don't have one on file, something they fail to mention. A good employment screener provides signatures for these audits and you'll never even have to know when they occur. A good company to provide your employment screening background checks takes all the worry out of hiring, lowers your turnover rate, and keeps you out of court so you can stay in business!