A long time ago the pre-hire screening process had the essence of Dick Tracey—private investigating companies doing background checks. Filing cabinets. Black-banded fedoras and khaki trench coats.
Times have changed.
Now the whole world lives online, and with that, so does most of their information. Doing a background check on a potential employee is simply as easy as pushing a button.
There are some items to pay attention to when doing background checks in the digital age. As states and cities continually update their processes in accordance with national EEOC and FCRA regulations, your company should too.
Automated Pre-Hire Background Checks
Many companies are turning to computer applications or “apps” to speed up and regulate their hiring processes. These programs are wonderful for increasing pre-hiring human resources efficiency. However, the chance for inaccurate data is possible.
To avoid errors, consider teaming up with an experienced background-checker who can double-check any tricky inconsistencies.
Social Media Analysis
This has become a tricky topic, mostly because some employers asked potential employees for passwords. Many states are working on passing laws to protect applicants’ privacy.
Honestly, the best site to check your applicant’s employment history and background is LinkedIn. LinkedIn hosts wonderful features including not just the applicant’s CV, but references from other coworkers and project examples as well.
Sites like Facebook and Twitter are for social use in many cases (unless an applicant has an online portfolio and utilizes these tools). Most applicants will keep them private (if smart).
State Laws and Credit Report Checks
Many states are passing laws to limit or prevent credit report checks for potential employers. A 2012 Society for Human Resources Management survey (SHRM) found that 13% of businesses check the credit score, and 47% order credit reporting when conducting background screening.
More than 31 cities and 6 states currently restrict the use of credit histories in background checks, and these numbers are scheduled to rise.
We live in a society where privacy is becoming scarcer on a daily basis. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) job is to enforce rights and anti-discrimination laws for all workers. The EEOC is checking into companies that reject candidates based on criminal background checks.
The agency will continue to conduct public meetings to consider if pre-employment background checks constitute discrimination.
Keep these screening topics in mind, and call Clark Personnel Service if you have any candidate screening questions!