You have a great referral for your accounting position and because it was from a trusted source you extend the offer and settle on a start date very quickly. One (1) year later things are not going well at all. There have been some "questionable" transactions made by this employee on the company credit card. You are discussing appropriate steps with your employment attorney and the question is asked about the information gleaned from the background check. Your response is that a background check was not conducted...
Read further to view what Jane McFadden from HR Profile has to say regarding the importance of background checks - regardless of your company's size.
Why does a company run a background check on their potential employees? Security, Safety, Cost, Confirmation?! The answer is all of the above. It is in a company’s best interest to know as much as they can about the person they are getting ready to hire, to be able to assess if that person is going to be a good fit within your organization, environment, and culture. Background checks have become common practice in hiring today, but it wasn’t ALWAYS that way, and not ALL companies do background checks- even though they should, only 96% do. As a small business you might think you know everyone you hire, they’re all family or friends of family. And your company is so small you know what everyone does, so you don’t need to worry about fraudulent behavior. Maybe you think you can’t afford it- but my question is can you afford NOT to? You can’t always tell an apple is bad just by looking at it.
Hiring is expensive. It can cost a company 4-10X a person’s salary to replace them- which is a huge expense to a small company. Small businesses require specialized strategies in order to succeed, and many small companies don’t take into account the benefits of the screening process. Like hiring qualified candidates with a track record of good work, protecting employees from potential safety issues and negligent hiring lawsuits.
While there is no test or check that can guarantee you’ll never have an issue with an employee, it is true that past behavior is the best indicator of future behavior. Due diligence is necessary to protect your business and your employees. There is no law that says a company must run a background check on every employee before they hire them. But there are laws that guide how a background check must be performed, and those laws are mandated by the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). Background checks can include criminal records, credit checks, driving record, social security number trace, employment and education verifications, violent sex offender searches, and many more- all determined by the type of position you are looking to fill. FCRA’s biggest requirement is the candidate must know the check is being performed. Under the FCRA, as a small business you can have limited legal immunity, by using a third-party background pre-employment screening company, like HR Profile.
A job application won’t provide all of the necessary information that employers need in order to make an educated decision about whether or not they can trust the person applying. Conducting employee background checks allows employers to review an applicant in a comprehensive manner to help small business stand out among the competition and operate in a cost effective manner. Employees who don’t need to worry about hiding something can devote their time and attention to the success of the company, creating a positive atmosphere and culture. Running a background check ensures that you will hire better qualified candidates, improve turnover, safety, and security within your company.
My biggest rebuttal when talking with small businesses is “we only hire people we know”, which is great! But what you talk about with people personally rarely involves any derogatory information that would come up in a background check. People don’t tend to brag about their criminal records, especially to friends and family.
Background checks don’t only highlight the bad and wrong candidates have done, they also highlight the success and experience the candidate possesses. It is a great way to determine in a broad and thorough way if the candidate will be a good fit for your company. A background check will confirm your candidate has what it takes to make a difference in your organization based on their past experiences.
Studies have shown that 50% or more applicants have lied on their resume. 25% of applicants have a criminal record. Wouldn’t you like to know who? Invest in background screening services that will allow you peace of mind, knowing you hired a qualified professional.