All too often employee background checks are synonymous with pre-employment background checks. Unfortunately, if our criminal record check policy is a one-and-done process then we expose our organization to unnecessary risk. Background screening, like health insurance, is an ongoing requirement. The bad news is we will not see ObamaScreening in the next 4 years. However, the good news is high quality background checks are extremely affordable, unlike healthcare.
There are 4 reasons you should be conducting current employee background checks:
- Employees who pre-date background check policy. The background screening industry is literally still a toddler. Even with the proliferation of criminal records checks after 9-11-01, this was focused on pre-employment checks and leaves a large pool of current employees that have never had a criminal background check.
- A lot can change in 20+ year career. Simply conducting pre-employment background checks will not be enough to protect our organizations.
- Criminal background checks are time sensitive. The minute a background screening report is returned, it is a historic document. What does that mean? Well, your candidate could commit a crime tonight and it would not be reported in the screening report completed earlier today. Recently, one of our large school district clients inadvertently ordered a re-check on an employee. The employee had a pending felony theft case and when we called the school to notify them, they were shocked.
- Negligent Retention. We hear a lot about negligent hiring. However, the twin sister of negligent hiring is negligent retention. Basically that as an employer becomes aware or should have become aware of problems with an employee and you take no corrective action (investigating, reassignment or termination). Ongoing background checks provide protection against the “becomes aware or should have become aware.”
Implementing a current employee background check program is very simple. Yes, it does require a policy change and articulating a business necessity (protect our employees, customers, etc). And yes, you will hear some grumbling from employees.
We have also created technology that makes screening existing employees easier. First, we can enter a date in your account, such as 5 years, and then you will receive a monthly report of any employee who has a background check expiring in the next 30 days. You simply check the employees you wish to re-screen and email it to your account representative who uploads it to our system.
Or you can use our “paperless” process where we program a link that can be placed on your website. Your employees click on a link, sign and e-authorization, input their information and initiate a background check. You even have the option of adding a merchant account if you require employees to pay for their background checks.
Join us on 11/28/2012 at 2PM EST for a FREE webinar: Should We Be Screening Existing Employees? Click here to register.