Sunday, October 17, 2021

Do You think Skipping the Background Check will help you Hire more Quickly? You should think again!

Companies are competing for New Hires!

Right now, the reality is that job seekers are in the driver’s seat. Many companies are in desperate need of employees to keep their business running, yet oftentimes very few applicants apply.

If you find that your business is facing the "I need to hire but no one is applying" dilemma, instead of throwing in the towel, you need to do this instead ~ take a good hard look at what you and your business are offering!

And it all starts with being honest with yourself about your business……

  • Before the pandemic hit did you have a high employee turnover?
  • Despite your company earning increasing business profits, did your employees’ wages remain stagnant?
  • Did you ignore or refuse to offer incentives such as good benefits and perks to attract and retain good workers? 

If the answers to any of these questions is yes, then the next question becomes….What can you do now?

Learn the steps you can take to find the hires you need here!

Once you have taken a good hard look at what you offer to potential employees, then you need to take the steps necessary to ensure your new hire will be an asset to your business.

The best place to begin is with the Employment Background Check!

While it might be tempting to skip or even rush, your employment background checks due to your need to hire now, that is never a wise course of action.

Screening potential employees is a vital tool in helping you hire safely and effectively. 

Knowing as much as you can about the person you hire into your company simply makes good business sense.

Understanding the skills they bring to the table, whether they are honest, and if they have a criminal record that could jeopardize your company, are all good reasons to screen before you hire.

Still on the fence about the importance of employment background checks? Consider this..... 

A good Employment Background Check will:

  1. Verify whether Your Applicant’s Resume is Truthful
  2. Help You keep a Safer Workplace
  3. Protect Your Company and its Assets
  4. Stay Compliant with Current Federal and State Employment Laws
  5. Protect Your Company from Potential Lawsuits

Learn more in “The Top 5 Reasons You should use Employment Background Checks".

When it comes to employment background checks, it is important that you never go in without a plan. And the Key to it all is to be Proactive, not Reactive, when it comes to hiring for your small business!

The best way to achieve this is to have a sound hiring process in place long before you need it.

When done right, this plan will give you a step by step guide to exactly what you need to do and when you need to do it. It will include the right time to hire, how to hire, and why a good background check is crucial to making a successful hire!

In “Why you need to be Proactive when it comes to Employment Background Checks”, you will learn not only “When” and “How” to hire for your Small Business, you will discover the importance of good job descriptions and choosing the right candidate in the first place!

“When” to Hire for Your Small Business

Understanding “When” to hire is the best place to start.

You should hire when…..your current workforce cannot meet demand, you need a new skill set to grow your company, and you can afford to hire!

Then it is important to outline the steps you will take to make that hire.

“How” to Hire for Your Small Business

When you have determined you are ready to hire, you should then take a look at “how” to hire. The best way to do this is to make sure you have good job descriptions firmly in place before you start your search for the best candidates.

Writing an effective and detailed job description is important. It not only helps you hire the best person for the job, it also protects your company legally.  

The right job description ensures that both your applicants and your existing employees understand what is expected of them. It will also help you, as a manager, to determine whether your employees are meeting the job’s expectations”.

In addition, Your Job Description will:

  • outline the duties and expectations of the position
  • determine your job training goals
  • help you evaluate your employee’s performance

Taking all these steps before you are in dire need of a new hire will set you up for success to the benefit of your company, clients, and existing workforce.

But if you really need to hire NOW, then be sure you make no final decision until you screen your top candidates. It is the absolute best way to get the information you need to make a good hiring decision and keep your business and employees safe in the process.

Contact API today to learn more about Background Checks and how they can help you hire right! And we will work with you to develop an effective plan that keeps in mind your needs and your budget.


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Sunday, September 26, 2021

Ageism in the Workplace ~ Discover Why you need to Hire and Retain Older Workers

Is Your Company Ready to Embrace Older Workers?

Did You Know……

"According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), about 40 percent of people ages 55 and older were working or actively looking for work in 2014. That number, known as a labor force participation rate, is expected to increase fastest for the oldest segments of the population —most notably, people ages 65 to 74 —through 2024k with an 86% increase in workers  over 75 . In comparison, participation rates for most other age groups in the labor force aren’t projected to change much over 5% in the 2014–24 decade". Source1

What does this surge in older workers and job applicants mean for today’s workplace?

When it comes to hiring and the workplace, companies need to do what they can to be fair and equitable ~ not just in dealing with traditional “protected classes”, but also in how they handle older job applicants and employees once they are part of your workforce.

The question is ~ are your company’s hiring and employment practices up to the task?

Is “Ageism” the new Discrimination? “Tweet This”!

According to recent studies by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), the Equal Opportunity Commission (EEOC), and many others, “Age discrimination is alive and well in the digital age, despite 50 years of laws intended to protect older Americans’ right to work. In fact, it’s thriving, with 20,857 such complaints filed with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in 2016 alone, AARP states on its website.

A recent study that looked at more than 40,000 job applicant profiles found statistical evidence of age discrimination in hiring—discrimination against both women and men. Older applicants—those 64 to 66 years of age—experience more age discrimination than middle-age applicants ages 49 to 51, while women—especially older women, even those of middle age—experience more age discrimination in hiring than men do, the study indicated.” Source2

Thanks to better healthcare and lifestyle changes, people are living longer than ever before. Many are more active and vital long past their 60s and they want to keep doing what they love ~ and for some, that means continuing to work, or even embarking on a new career!

But instead of being welcomed and encouraged, many are being faced with a subtle roadblock ~ their age is being held against them.

“A new data analysis by ProPublica and the Urban Institute shows more than half of older U.S. workers are pushed out of longtime jobs before they choose to retire, suffering financial damage that is often irreversible.” Source3

And Ageism is worse in some industries more than others.

Over 40% of Tech Workers worry about Ageism

“Not only do employees witness an imbalance in age representation, but it is also causing anxiety among some workers.

Our survey of tech workers found that close to half of respondents (43%) worry about losing their job because of their age. Even more troubling, nearly one 5th (18%) say they worry about it “all the time.”.

It’s there in the cliched but widespread perception that employees need to be young to have a good grasp of the latest technology. And it’s there in startup cultures that push for long hours and low pay, which are hardly friendly to older workers with families. And as firms battle to attract young talent with ever more extravagant perks, they can unintentionally create an environment and culture that excludes older workers".

The fact remains that “retirement” is no longer at 62 or even 65 for a variety of reasons.

Some may find that they simply can’t afford to retire. Lack of pensions, rising healthcare and insurance costs, and increasing taxes all can factor into this decision to keep working.

Others simply love what they do. Their career gives them personal satisfaction and speaks to their desire to stay relevant and productive.

Now it’s time to get employers on board.

Employers Lose when they won’t Hire Older Workers! “Tweet This”

While many companies have anti-discrimination policies in place that include age, it often becomes lost in the day to day. The time is now for employers to Practice what you Preach! 

Your actions, especially when it comes to hiring, must follow the guidelines both in your policy and those that exist within local, county, state, and federal laws.

It is important that you show a strong dedication to hiring for qualifications and fitness for the job no matter the age, sex, race, religion, or sexual orientation of your applicants. 

You can accomplish this by:

  • Using age-inclusive language in your hiring and employment practices, including job postings.
  • Focusing on establishing benefits that take into consideration the wants and needs of your diverse workforce.
  • Creating a welcoming and innovative working environment that encourages collaboration.

“In order to really succeed in creating an innovative and welcoming environment, you (companies) need a mixed workforce. Having both experienced and skilled employees at all levels is key.

Creating an atmosphere where each generation of employees can learn from the other is one that will thrive and prosper. This results in the best of both worlds ~ a marriage between the tried and true and the up and coming.

This type of culture embraces experience while recognizing the benefits of introducing new talent and ideas. It is also the perfect way of establishing a strong company succession plan ~ something that every successful company needs”; excerpt from “Hiring? What You Should Do Now to Attract the New Hires You Need!”.

Do so, and this is what you will gain ~ a diverse group of employees that provide much needed skills, knowledge, and experience to your workplace.

In addition, building a diverse workforce is an amazing way to attract and retain the best hires.

It creates an environment filled with varying ideas, skills, and experience. The key is to get your diverse employees working as a team and sharing their knowledge and skills to better themselves and your company.

A great way to start is to establish a strong Mentoring Program.

Mentoring allows employees of different ages and backgrounds a better chance to know and learn from each other.

“While some businesses already understand the benefits of a strong internal Mentoring program, not all are as yet so savvy".

Business owners would be wise to embrace the idea of Mentoring. It is a great way to “onboard” new hires, especially those who have recently graduated and interns just entering the workforce. It can also be valuable as a way to get existing employees ready for promotion.” 

Establishing mentoring relationships between diverse employees, and that includes different ages, helps spread your employees’ knowledge and skill pool throughout your workforce!

Learn more about the value of Mentoring in your workplace in “Are You Ready to be a Mentor?”.

The fact is, rather than retire at age 65, more older Americans are remaining in or returning to the workforce. Some are continuing to work due to longer life expectancies, health expenses or financial insecurity. Others simply enjoy the social interaction and the fulfillment and sense of identity work provides.

In order to succeed, it is vital that your workplace embrace them. Is your company ready?

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Source 1* Older Workers: Labor Force Trends 

Source 2* Despite Laws intended to Prevent it, Age Discrimination ‘Alive and Well 

Source 3* If You're over 50, Chances are the decision to Leave a Job won't be Yours

Sunday, August 22, 2021

Discover why Background Checks on Volunteers are just as important as Screening New Hires!

Background checks on volunteers are just as important to your company as screening new hires!

Screening your Volunteers, just like you do potential employees, is simply good business. It helps promote increased workplace safety, productivity, and customer service ~ all essential to your business!

Volunteers are often critical to the success of many organizationsWith tight budgets to hire full or even part-time employees, along with a vast amount of job openings in our present market not yet being filled, volunteers take up the slack. They spend countless hours coaching youth sports, delivering meals to the needy, mentoring and tutoring children, and so many more things to help the community and businesses around them.

Volunteers do these things as a way to give back and help others. They believe in making a difference and in being a good citizen. Their goal is to help those around them, and that often includes our children, elderly, and disabled.  

However, there have also been horror stories about the danger some of these volunteers have posed. Reports of convicted abusers who are found volunteering as coaches or in child care are an obvious cause for concern.

Today, more than ever, organizations who use volunteers need to address this issue. Protecting the very people they are trying to help must be a priority. This is where screening volunteers comes in.

While conducting volunteer background checks is vital, these organizations do not want to alienate these volunteers in the process. Concerns that background checks will violate their privacy and that these organizations will not protect their personal information can arise.

This can be a delicate balancing act. Organizations are faced with the need to weed out unsafe volunteers without losing any of the loyal and dedicated volunteers they need. 

In the meantime, many states have passed, or are in the process of passing, legislation that mandates background checks on any one who comes in “direct contact” with our children or other members of our vulnerable populations.

But questions continue….

  • What exactly is “direct contact”? 
  • Does it cover anyone who is even in the same room as children, the elderly, or disabled? 
  • Or does it only pertain to those who have unsupervised contact?  
  • Who pays the fees associated with these background checks? 
  • Is it cost prohibitive for organizations, especially non-profits, to cover the cost? 
  • Or is it an undue burden on volunteers who are asked to pay for it themselves? 
  • What exactly should be checked? Since no standard exists, what is best practice?
  • What offenses should disqualify someone from volunteering?
  • What can be done to minimize a volunteer’s objections to a background check?    

This can all be very confusing for anyone who uses volunteers.  

In reality, most organizations run some type of background check on their volunteers. These background checks are run for the same reasons as they would be on any employee ~ to keep out anyone who is unsafe.  

But while there may be some who are wary of pre-employment background checks, volunteers are often even more put off by the idea.

Long-time volunteers may object to a new screening policy after years of giving their time and energy to an organization. While those considering volunteering for the first time might be turned off from even applying.

Many are understandably worried about their personal information being leaked. Volunteers may also believe that a new screening policy creates an atmosphere of distrust. 

But the bottom line is this ~ Volunteers who work with Children, the Elderly, or any vulnerable population need Background Checks.

Our top priority should be the Safety of our Children, the Elderly, and our Vulnerable! “Tweet This”

Organizations can take definite steps to achieve this goal. It is possible to provide a safe and productive environment for the population you serve while mitigating the concerns of your volunteers.

To do this, Organizations Need to:

Create a Written Volunteer Screening Policy ~ This policy should outline the screening procedures used and be included in your organization’s written policies. Make sure that everyone is fully informed of your policy and publish it both in your written materials and online for all to clearly see.

Provide Job Descriptions for Every Position within Your Organization ~ This should include exactly what is required of each volunteer who fills the position. Being clear on this up front sets expectations and boundaries. It is also a great way of determining what needs to be checked during screening by fitting the scope of the check to the job duties. Find out more  in  “One Size Does Not Fit All ~ Why You Need to Fit the BG Check to the Job!”.   

Identify the Background Check Fees & Who is Responsible for Paying Them State clearly whether these fees are to be paid fully by your organization, fully by the volunteer, or by a combination of the two. Being up front is the best way to avoid surprises.

Obtain an Application and Signed Release for All Volunteers The application should include the potential volunteer’s full name, any previous names used, addresses for the past 7 years, references, and a copy of their photo ID. It is important that you get this application from each volunteer and keep it in a secure file.

This also goes for a signed release form. This form both notifies a volunteer that a background check will be performed and documents their consent. Requiring this authorization helps protect your organization. 

Establish Procedures to Review the Volunteer’s Application ~ In reviewing the application, look for inconsistencies in the information listed. Check references and try to develop references not listed. Any questionable information found during this process needs to be documented. It is also important to be clear that false statements on the application is cause for disqualification as a volunteer. Taking the time necessary to be diligent here is an important step in making sure you identify possibly problematic volunteers.  

Clearly Identify Which Criminal Offenses Would Disqualify a Volunteer ~ While it is important that each organization determine for themselves what offenses will prohibit someone from volunteering, the following criminal offenses should be taken seriously and result in automatic  disqualification:

  • Child, Elderly, or other types of Abuse or Domestic Violence Convictions
  • Sex Offenses & Sexual Misconduct Convictions
  • Violent Felony Convictions

Although the following offenses may not be grounds for immediate disqualification ~ Pending Criminal Cases, Arrests, and Misdemeanors within the past 7 years ~ they should also be noted.

Document All Information Obtained During the Screening Process & All Actions Taken ~ Be sure to keep a written log documenting what was checked, when it was checked, and what action was taken because of the information obtained. It is important to keep a clear and concise record of any decision you make regarding each of your volunteers.

Create a Privacy and Personal Information Policy ~ Protection of sensitive, personal information should be a priority. All the information obtained on each volunteer, from the application, application review, and the criminal background check, must be kept completely confidential. It is good practice to keep the application review results and criminal check histories separate from the general volunteer files. These should only be accessible to authorized personnel.    

We need to remember that Volunteers are important. They provide much needed man power to many organizations and their contributions cannot be minimized. However, that does not mean that you should take any volunteer into your organization blindly. 

Making sure they do not pose a potential problem to those you serve is priority number one. And putting sound screening procedures in place is a great start. Making sure your volunteers understand why these checks are necessary is key.   

Contact API today! We can help you create a sound background check policy and provide the services you need to hire safely and effectively!


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Sunday, July 25, 2021

Learn How You can use Your Existing Employees to Help you Hire

Having the right employees is crucial to the success of your business.

They help keep your business running smoothly and your customers happy.

But did you know that they can also be an important tool when it comes time for you to hire?

Using your existing workforce as a resource simply makes good business sense. They are intimately aware of what is needed to do the jobs within your company and they also understand the inner workings of the team.

So how exactly can they help you find and train the new hire you need?

Here are some tips to help ~

  • Reach out to your employees, especially your best and brightest. Talk to them. Find out more about what skills and talents are needed to help your company grow and succeed. Learn where your workforce is lacking and where it needs help.
  • Really listen to what they have to say. Their input will be invaluable not only in recruiting but when it comes time to make a job offer.
  • Ask them to refer other like-minded, smart and hard-working individuals to the business to supplement your recruiting efforts. Sometimes your current employees are your best resource for finding qualified candidates who can help improve your business.


Employee Referrals

Does your company have an Employee Referral Program? If not, that is a change you should definitely consider making!

Employee Referral programs are good for your business and especially for finding great new hires. Your employees are intimately aware of the inner working of your company and your company’s needs. They also know the company culture and who will fit in and who will not. 

When it comes to getting the best referrals, start by asking your best and most skilled employees. Most likely they will have among their friends and acquaintances others who possess the same qualities that make these employees so valuable.

Getting referrals from your existing employees has multiple benefits. It is a great way to both reward your employees for their viable referrals and keep them happy with your new hires. And it will also help you find the right person for the job.

Discover more hiring tips in “Is it Time to Change your Hiring Practices”.

Engaged and Appreciated Employees are your best Company Ambassadors! “Tweet This”!

You should also encourage your employees to “talk up” your businessRecommend that they share information about their job and your company with their family, friends, and even acquaintances. Any time your employees are at social events it presents an opportunity. 

This doesn’t mean you want them sharing false praises or that you expect them to endlessly talk about their jobs. It simply means that if your employees are happy then they will want to help spread the word!

Another way your employees can help you hire is to regularly engage with your brand on social media.

Encourage them to:

  • Like and Follow your social accounts, including your blog.
  • Ask others in their circle to also Like and Follow your accounts
  • Like, Share, Retweet, and Comment on your company posts
  • Post reviews and comments on your social sites

If you have a blog, you may even consider asking your employees to write a guest post. It can be on anything from their job, a company event, or even an upcoming product or service release. The key is for them to be a part of creating content and to provide them the pride of authorship. You may also consider a regular series of articles that highlight your staff.

No matter what you choose, including your employees on your company blog and encouraging them to engage with your company social media simply increases your reach and online visibility ~ all which can make your business attractive to potential new hires.

But before you expect your employees to help you advertise your company and find new hires, you need to take a good look at how they truly feel about you and your company. How effective and interested your employees are in helping you find quality hires all hinges on how you treat them in the first place!

That is why it is so important that your first goal should be on training, encouraging, and retaining your best existing employees.

5 Retention Tips for Keeping Top Talent

Help Your New Employee Define and Reach Their GoalsHelp them to identify where they want to go and what steps are necessary to get them there. Just determining their goals is not enough. You need to provide them with a realistic set of steps to help them achieve those goals. The best employees are never satisfied. This is what makes them high achievers.

Create an Environment that Encourages SuccessMake sure your company is a place that helps them reach their goals or is a significant stop along the way. Be the place where they are able to achieve a major milestone in their career. Be the company that discovered their talents and nurtured those talents.  This will bring success to them and to your company.

Enable Your Employees to Develop New and Marketable Skills ~ Encourage your team to share their own abilities and allow them to learn from each other. This helps you create well-rounded and skilled employees. It also promotes a greater sense of “team” and a more productive work environment.  Also provide opportunities to attend interesting and informative workshops and conferences. The chance to absorb industry knowledge and network is invaluable.

Set Specific GoalsLay out an action plan with a specific time frame for completion. Provide them with all the resources necessary to achieve those action plan goals. Make sure you evaluate their progress and increase their responsibility upon successful completion. Your performance reviews should provide REAL FEEDBACK. Discuss where they are, where they need to head, and how they can get there. This keeps your workforce constantly improving and growing.

Provide Real Opportunity to AdvanceGive your employees the chance to EARN high level duties and even allow them to outgrow your company if necessary! Your valuable employees need to know you promote from within.  They need to feel they have a real future at your company.  However, if they have truly achieved their highest potential with you, provide them with the positive, helpful references they have earned and deserve. Remember, it is good to “Pay it Forward!”.

Find more tips on employee retention here!

It is also important that your employees are engaged and invested in your business. Make sure you really listen to their suggestions, problems, and concerns. Create an open line of communication where they feel comfortable approaching you and their opinion is valued.

Hold open brainstorming sessions to deal with, or even better, to prevent problems. Ask them for ideas and listen without judgment, while honing in on and fine tuning their best suggestions. Then it is important that you act on them. This will help your employees feel valued, appreciated, and truly part of a team.

The bottom line is this ~ if you’re going to depend on your employees to help you find and retain good hires, then they have to be invested in your company. And if you treat them well they will be happy to help your business thrive.


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Sunday, June 27, 2021

We are finding Special Meaning in this Independence Day!


 What are you celebrating this Independence Day?

While the traditional reason behind July 4th is still something to honor, this year we all have more reasons that ever to celebrate.

We have come through a very trying and difficult time. Not only our nation, but the entire world, has faced many hardships, sorrows, and divisions. We have lost loved ones. We have been separated from family and friends. And we have seen the difficulties that came from businesses downsizing and even shutting their doors for good.

At Access Profiles, we have also felt the profound effects of the pandemic, so we understand. We saw the struggles our clients faced and offered sympathy and support sympathize while we dealt with our own.

But despite these hardships, many of us are finally seeing a way out and shifting our focus on the days ahead! We are finding a new Independence!

People are visiting their family and friends. Travel is exploding as we are all more than ready to take the trips we postponed and find new places to explore. 

Many businesses are also finding their way back. After long months of safety restrictions and modified hours, they are slowly moving forward and back towards their “normal”.  

As customers, we are responding. People are no longer only relying on take-out to keep their favorite restaurants afloat. We are once again eating inside. Entertainment and sports venues are seeing increased attendance. And many other businesses, such as retail, are feeling more hopeful than they have in a long time.

And we are all more than ready!

So this July 4th, and for many to come, we all should reflect on what has passed and rejoice at what has yet to come. We know we will! Happy Independence Day to all!


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Sunday, June 20, 2021

What is “Provisional” Employment and how can You use it in your Small Business?

Have you ever hired an employee on a “conditional” basis? Do you even know what that means? 

Here we will try to shed some light on hiring a “provisional” or “conditional” employee and how it can make sense for your business!

Provisional employment, or “conditional employment”, is when a new employee is offered a job contingent upon the successful completion of certain pre-determined criteria.

That criteria may include things like finalizing a degree or training, taking an entrance exam, or, most commonly, and the one we will focus on here, passing an employment background check.

The whole concept of “provisional” or conditional employment can be confusing.

In the United States, most workers are employed “at will”. Although this can vary by state, in general this means that employees can be fired for any reason. The exception is if the termination violates federal or state anti-discrimination laws. 

The same principle applies to job offers. Because of this, employers are free to expect prospective employees, or those given a conditional offer of employment, to fulfill certain requests, such as to pass background checks, undergo drug screenings, or any other requirements in order to get the job.

In order to decide if offering conditional employment would work for your business, it is important that you understand what hiring an employee on this basis really means.

First and foremost, hiring someone on a provisional basis means you really want them for the job. The candidate has the qualifications and skills you need and has impressed during their interview(s).

So, you may ask, why not simply hire them permanently right now?

The reality it that it may be best to wait on making that final job offer and hire them conditionally instead. Conditional offers of employment can actually work for your business. They allow you to hire quickly when needed, such as when you have a sudden influx of work, someone unexpectedly leaves, or you need a seasonal hire, all without waiting for the finalized background check.

Conditional job offers can also be beneficial to your applicants. It shows that you value what the skills they have to offer, gives them a measure of security to know that you want to hire them, and can even give them an edge when negotiating with other potential employers.

However, not all job candidates my look on a conditional offer as favorably. They might not agree with the conditions you have set or be unable to meet them. But, most often, a provisional offer simply does not give them the same sense of security as an “unconditional” job offer would.

When it comes to making conditional job offers it is important to do it right! "Tweet This"

It is critical that you are honest and concise as to what that conditional offer means and the criteria that you are expecting to be met. The clearer you are the more positive this experience will be for both you and the potential employee.

The first step is to make sure you craft the clearest provisional offer letter you can. And you need to make sure that this offer follows all the best practices when it comes to the background check!

Before sending your conditional offer letter or, ideally before you ever even decide to hire, you should make sure that your hiring practices are not violating EEOC guidelines, especially those concerning background check releases and disclosure forms.

Begin by ensuring that you are not guilty of committing these 4 Common Background Check Release Violations:

  • You (the Employer) don't Disclose that a Background Check will be Obtained
  • You don't obtain a Signed Authorization from your Applicants
  • Your Authorization Form is Not a Stand-Alone Document
  • Your Authorization Form includes a Release from Liability

Find out more about the steps you need to take in order to screen your employees in “Tips to Help Your Business fly under the EEOC Radar”!

When you are ready to make an offer of conditional employment, and all your best practices are in place, then your offer letter should do the following:

  • make it clear the applicant is being hired as a provisional / conditional employee
  • list exactly what criteria is expected to be satisfactorily completed ~ such as the employment background check, passing a drug test, or anything else required of new employees
  • state a definite start date and the time when it is expected that the criteria required will be completed
  • state that permanent employment will follow completion of the conditions, or seasonal employment if that is the original goal

The key to it all is clear and honest communication, and it all starts with you ~ the Employer!

The whole idea of a background check can be daunting for many ~ even if they have absolutely nothing to hide. That is why you need to be completely upfront, open, and honest with your applicant. 

Make sure you are completely clear about the following:

  • What You will Check
  • What You are looking for in the background check 
  • What Factors can Cause Delays in the Background Check 
  • What Errors can be encountered during the entire process 
  • What Rights are afforded to Your Applicant

All candidates who are undergoing an employment background check have rights. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) dictates that employers must inform candidates in writing and get their written consent before conducting a credit check. In the event that the offer is revoked based on information discovered during the check, the FCRA requires employers to notify candidates and provide them with information on how to dispute the report

Learn more in “Ready to Hire? What your Applicant needs to know”!

As an employer, the tone you set from the beginning can have a lasting impact on the relationship you will have with your new employee. Being honest, responsive to questions, and keeping them apprised of their status, will go a long way towards making sure you leave your applicant with a good impression of you and your company.

And this is possible even when making a “provisional” hire!

Using conditional offers of employment can be good for your business. They can help you hire the talent you need without skipping any of the steps necessary to make sure they are a smart hire. 

Do you still have questions about Provisional Employment and Safe Hiring? We can help you navigate the world of employment background checks while keeping your bottom line firmly in mind.

Contact Us Today!


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Sunday, May 23, 2021

Need to Hire but "No one wants to Work"? The problem might not be what you think!

Need to Hire but it seems like “No one Wants to Work”? The problem might not be what you think!

Many businesses are in the same boat. They are trying to re-start their business after the pandemic closures and restrictions…and that often means hiring employees to help. But now they are facing a new problem they can’t find the workers they need because no one is applying!

The question then becomes Why?

Many believe that “no one needs to work because of all the government ‘handouts’ and increased employment benefits” and “since they removed the requirement that you have to look for work to receive those benefits, why work?”.  But the most common is that no one is applying for all the jobs out there because they are simply lazy. 

And while there will always be people who fit those descriptions…the truth is that the real answer may not be due to any of those things!

If you find that your business is facing the "I need to hire but no one is applying" dilemma, instead of throwing in the towel, you need to do this instead ~ take a good hard look at what you and your business are offering!

Be honest with yourself……

  • Before the pandemic hit did you have a high employee turnover?
  • Despite your company earning increasing business profits, did your employees’ wages remain stagnant?
  • Did you ignore or refuse to offer incentives such as good benefits and perks to attract and retain good workers? 

If the answers to any of these questions is yes, then the next question becomes….What can you do now?

This is the time to change your tactics, and that starts with doing the following….

Get the word out ~ Post your job opening on social media sites, jobs groups, and in newspapers. Even check out local trade schools, high schools, and community colleges. The more people that know you are hiring, the better.

Use the employees you do have to recruit new ones ~ Ask them to look at their family, friends, and social connections for potential new hires. Long-term employees know the ins and outs of your workplace. They know who will “fit”, what kind of skills you need, and the type of person who will be an asset. It simply makes good business sense to use them as a resource.

No one is applying for your job openings? Do this now! "Tweet this"

Offer sign on bonuses, better pay, perks, time off, and other incentivesAccording to a recent article from CBSLocal, “Over and over again companies just don’t recognize and value their employees and they underpay, not recognizing the cost of not having well trained and well knowledgeable employees. And high turnover is an expense too,” said Point Park Professor Elaine Luther. With the bounce back in business, Luther said people are looking for a job where they feel safe, valued and can make a livable wage”.

Take a look at your finances and resources and offer whatever you can. Get creative. And remember, it is not always about the money. 

"While it is true that some small companies may not be able to offer the salary associated with working for big business, they can offer many other things that will create a valuable working experience.   

Working for a Small Business can offer you (job seekers) something different. 

By nature, a small business atmosphere is more hands-on and close knit. Employees have a much more tangible stake in the success of the company and often have a chance for greater input. Even flexibility of work hours, telecommuting, and promotions are often part of the small business culture.

The success of a small company relies on flexibility. They depend upon being able to adapt quickly to changing external and internal forces. And their employees can learn a lot from this ever-changing environment. 

Small business employees have the opportunity to learn many roles. Strict adherence to job titles and work responsibilities is not often practical for companies with fewer employees. This allows for more job responsibilities and the chance to really make a difference ~ all of which is a great resume and career builder.

The collaborative and nurturing characteristics of small business are also a plus for employees. It is a chance to really get their voice heard and to get their ideas implemented much sooner and more often than will occur in a larger company. And as small businesses slowly start recovering from the effects of the pandemic and are once again hiring to bolster their workforce, it is more important than ever to keep them on your job search radar.

Learn more about attracting job seekers to your small business here!

Most importantly, take a look at yourself and your management staff ~ do you set the tone and atmosphere that makes your employees want to work for you and achieve?

  • Is your “management style” one that treats people with respect? 
  • Do you reward hard work? 
  • Do you welcome ideas and input from your employees? 
  • Is your company a place where employees not only achieve company goals but their own goals as well?

Creating an atmosphere where your employees feel valued is key. And it will make your company much more attractive to job seekers as well!

Being critical in assessing how your business looks to potential employees will go a long way towards getting the quality new hires you need. Simply put ~ Make your business a place people want to work. 

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Access Profiles can help you hire safely and effectively. Contact Us Today!

Learn more About Us and our Background Check and other Services too!

Sunday, April 25, 2021

Need a Background Check? Find out when and how to choose the right company for you!

 When is the best time to choose your Background Check company? 

The short answer is this ~ long before you are ready to hire! And here is why….

Imagine this, you are ready to make a new hire for your Small Business. You tell your network, place ads ~ all the things you hope will land you the perfect applicant.

You contact a few hopefuls to come in for an interview and find three possible candidates. But before making your new hire, you decide it might be wise to run a background check first.   

You make a few calls, or check online, and find a company you think will get you the information you need.  

What could be better?

But instead of being a good way to hire for your business, this is actually a perfect example of what NOT to do!

Our advice? The best time to contact us, or any screening company, is long BEFORE you ever need to hire!

Many companies get this backwards. They realize they need to hire, then scramble to find someone to help them screen their applicants ~ or worse, forgo the background check all together.

Meeting with potential background check companies before hand, and choosing the one best for you, will make your hiring process much smoother and more successful!

A good background check company will help you put in place all the steps you need to follow well in advance. This may start with the job descriptions for each position within your company (this is something that we have helped clients with in the past), and should also include advising you on your  employment applications.  

They will also make sure your release forms are compliant, or supply you with one of their own, along with explaining employee rights when it comes to background checks, adverse action letters, etc.

Connecting with your background check company early also gives you ample time to ask any questions you may have about the employment screening process. There should never be any confusion about how and why you are using background checks in your hiring practices.

Going the extra mile to make sure you are completely comfortable with the entire process is the goal of every good screening service ~ and this is especially important to Small Business.

With limited budgets and the settings that often result in close contact among employees and customers, hiring safely is more important than ever. 

Read “4 Reasons Why Small Businesses Need to Use Background Checks” to find out more!

No matter whether you are ready to make your first hire, or your 20th, preparing early  for what you need to do and when makes sense. And the best way to accomplish this? Partner with the right background check company first!

After all, going into anything blindly is rarely the best course of action ~ and making your new hire is no exception!

Choose a Background Check company that will work WITH you, not just FOR you! "Tweet This"

Want to know how to choose the best background check company for you and your business? The key is to find one that will work with you every step of the way!

You should understand first and foremost that not all Background Check Companies are created equal. And many small business owners are confused or fearful of choosing the wrong one. But it is possible to find one that is a perfect fit for you and your small business. 

You should choose a company that:

  • focuses on your needs
  • uses direct sources for their information
  • is willing to take the time necessary to do their job right
  • understands compliance issues
  • does not promise prices that are “too good to be true”

Learn more about choosing the best background check company for you here!

Outsourcing your employment background checks is simply good business. It will give you access to their knowledge and experience, keep you updated on compliance issues, will help you keep your candidate and employee information confidential and protected, act as a barrier against discrimination claims, and, most importantly, save you time, money, and resources.

Learn more in “5 Smart Reasons to Outsource your Background Checks”!

No matter which screening company you choose, it is always best to do some research long before you really need their services. Having one in place before looking for your new hire will give you time to integrate the background check into your hiring process and be prepared to move quickly when a candidate looks promising. And that is good for both you and your potential new hire!

Still have questions? Contact Us Today! We can give you the information you need and help you hire safely and effectively for your Small Business.


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Sunday, March 28, 2021

What should You do if your college doesn’t respond to a Verification Request?

 
What would you do…..

You’ve been offered the job. After seemingly endless months of submitting your resume and rounds of interviews, you finally see an end in sight. Only one step remains, and that step is for you to pass the employment background check.

Everything seems to be going well until your screening hits a roadblock ~ your hard earned degree can’t be verified! Of course you know you graduated, so what can possibly be the problem? 

In an attempt to get your screening back on track, you reach out to your contact. And what do you find? You learn that the university has simply not answered their query.

So, what can you do?

This question was posed to us on Quora and this is our response:

"If a university, college, or other educational institution does not respond to a request for a verification, you do have some options. First, you can contact the institution yourself for an explanation. It may be that they require a signed authorization permitting them to release this information. Or, and this has happened, they refuse to release information due to an unpaid bill (even a library fine). No matter what the reason, finding out first hand can go a long way towards remedying it. If you get no satisfaction through the institution itself, which is unlikely, another step you can take is to provide your own verifying information. Official copies of your transcript, diploma, etc. might be acceptable to a potential employer. However, the best step of all is to know before you even apply for a job if there will be any “glitches” during the background check. That means contacting the university, high school, trade school, etc. where you claim a degree or certification to find out what information they have on file and what they will provide to a potential employer. Address and fix any issues that arise. You should do the same with your past employments and even your criminal history. The idea is to not be confronted with any “red flags” when you are looking for your next job. Good luck!"

You can find more answers to this question here!

Hitting Roadblocks in your Employment Background Check? That’s why you need to screen yourself first! “Tweet This”!

Encountering road blocks during your background check is undoubtedly frustrating. But the reality is that they do happen.

Your best bet is to be prepared first. And that means doing a background check on yourself first, creating a “background check ready” resume, and, above all, being honest every step of the way!

Have You ever Considered Doing a Background Check on Yourself?

There are many reasons why you may want to know what is "out there" about you. You may be considering college or buying a home. You may even want to volunteer at your child's school. But the most common reason by far is when you are thinking about applying for a job or trying to get a promotion.

The question then becomes, How?

Many employers use Background Checks as part of their hiring process. Most of these employers are looking for past criminal histories and validation of your employment and education claims. Some also do searches on driving records and social media presence.

Do you know what they will find?

Your best defense is a sound offense. Before you apply for any job, you will probably update your resume, research the company where you are applying – all in the hope of putting your best foot forward. Why not add a Background Check to that list?

Your background check should include the following:

  • Criminal History check
  • Education verification
  • Employment history
  • Driving history
  • Internet Search

Learn more in “Why, When, and How You should run a Background Check on Yourself!”.

Once you know what a background check will find, your next step is to make sure your resume is in complete alignment with that information….and these tips will help!

5 Rules you should follow to make your resume background check ready:

  1. Make sure your resume is “clean”
  2. Never list a degree you haven’t earned
  3. Make sure all employments listed are accurate
  4. Know what your past employers will say about you
  5. Be ready to mitigate any employment gaps or inaccuracies

Learn more about how you can use these steps to create your perfect resume here!

But no matter how much prep work you do, the most important thing when it comes to applying for and landing a job is that, above all, you are honest.

When your resume lies are uncovered during the hiring process, you lose. And, if discovered later, you could face not only the embarrassment of getting fired, but also the possibility of public humiliation.

Employers are understandably wary. Making a new hire, or promoting an existing hire, is a big deal. It costs money and time. And every employee is a reflection back on the company’s image and brand. No company wants the employer/employee relationship to begin with a lie.

These are the Top 5 Resume Lies that can keep you from getting the job:

  1. skills and responsibilities
  2. degree / diploma
  3. dates of employment
  4. job title
  5. past employers

You may think these are simply “little embellishments” or “close to the truth”, but no matter how you look at them, they are still lies.  And employers take notice!

Lying on your resume is never wise and it is often viewed as a mark against your honesty and integrity. 

Employers want to hire someone they can trust. If their first impression of you is one of deception, then your chances of getting hired are slim.

Discover more about the importance of honesty in your job search in “Employers Share ~ Lie on your Resume and You Lose”.

Preparing yourself for the inevitable employment background check is an important part of your job search. It should be given the same intensity and focus that you applied towards getting the education, training, and experience that now makes you a great candidate for the job.

And all it really takes is a little preparation before you apply! Good luck!


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Need help making sure your resume is “background check ready”? Contact Us Today! We can help you find the information you need to build a resume that will help you get the job you want!

Learn more About Us and our Background Check and Job Search services. Discover what our Happy Clients have to say too!