Improper pre-employment background screening can mean leaving a business vulnerable to a lawsuit or hiring people who are not a fit. With legal and regulatory changes making the pre-employment background screening landscape complicated to navigate, more and more businesses are taking stock of their current practices to ensure that they are in line.
The following are five best practices for businesses to consider when evaluating a pre-employment background screening program:
1. Designate an On-Site Expert
Ideally, there should be one staff member who is the go-to person on conducting pre-employment background screening for potential new hires. This individual should be well versed in current rules and parameters, proactive, and able to stay abreast of changes in the legal landscape so that the company can stay compliant.
2. Enlist Help from Internal Resources
While one person should be the designated go-to pre-employment background screening expert, others in the company should also be drawn upon to enrich and enhance the company policy. Persons from the legal department, the security team, management and department heads should be consulted as well as human resources in order to craft the best protocols possible.
3. Stay Connected
The pre-employment background screening expert as well as the individuals discussed above should do weekly checks to ensure that the company stays in compliance. Current EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) and FCRA (Fair Credit Reporting Act) requirements pertaining to hiring as well as Federal and your current state laws should be strictly adhered to.
4. Make a Decision About Centralizing Oversight
If a business has more than one branch or location, they will have to decide if one screening system will be used comprehensively for the organization or if each separate location will be allowed to manage its own.
5. Use Professional Background Checks
Checking into the past of potential new hires involves a lot of variables, including laws and procedures that must be followed in order to do so legally. The courts and criminal background report system can be difficult to navigate, as can credit reporting agency documents and other financial records. Because of this, outsourcing background checks to a professional is an excellent way to help ensure that this step is completed efficiently, effectively and legally.
Poor or improper pre-employment background screening can leave a business open to hiring errors and costly legal problems. Businesses should strive to enact these five best practices when evaluating or creating a new employment screening program.