Sunday, March 24, 2013

6 Tips on Using Background and Due Diligence Checks in Your Business

"Trust But Verify" Ronald Reagan
We adopted this quote as our company motto and it precisely sums up our belief that what we do is important and truly helps others. Find out how we can help you too.....

Most employers have heard discussions concerning the effectiveness and uses of background checks and due diligence investigations during the course of their business. Questions arise concerning whether running these checks are wise or even necessary. At API we firmly believe they are!  

Having information on the people you employ and the companies you do business with may make the difference between a safe and profitable work environment and one that is rife with uncertainty.

We believe that being forewarned is forearmed. Having information at your disposal on your applicant's or potential partner's prior criminal acts, especially violent ones, or a past history of civil suits allows you to make a much more informed decision.

However, that is not to say that the whole issue of background checks isn’t confusing. When and how you can legally use them, on whom should you run them, and what types of things you should check, are all legitimate questions and causes for concern.

6 Tips for Using Background Checks in Your Business

1. Choose a Background Check Company Wisely
Our best advice, find a company where you feel like you are partners in the process, not where you are simply being "told" what to do. The best choice is to find a screening company that is invested in your success and helps you make good employment decisions. The most important thing is for you to feel comfortable.

It is also important that the information they provide is verified through the court system.  This helps avoid errors in their reports and lessens the possibility of dispute by the subject of the background check.

Find out more about choosing the right Background Check company for you here!

2. Stay Updated on EEOC Guidelines concerning Pre-Employment Screening
Currently there are two key issues when it comes to employment background checks that you must keep in mind. First, only past criminal history that directly impacts the ability to do the open position should be considered. Second, each applicant must be given the revised “Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act” and sign a stand alone authorization permitting the check. The first outlines an applicant’s rights in disputing any adverse employment reaction based on the criminal history report and the second assures that your applicant understands those rights and agrees to the background check.

It is still possible, and recommended, that all applicants undergo a background investigation. It is simply important to be aware of the legal uses and be compliant. A good background check company will help you with this.

3. Run Background Checks on Temps and Interns
Despite them being hired for the “short term”, both temporary workers and interns are still part of your workforce. They are privy to your company information and are, in fact, representatives of your company.

It is also important to remember that these workers still come in contact with your other employees and possibly clients and customers. Therefore, as with long-term employees, safety should be of concern. Learn more about why screening interns is simply good business here!

6 Tips to Help You Navigate the World of Background Checks and get the Information You Really Need! "Tweet This"

4. Run Periodic Background Checks on Existing Employees
Much like random drug and alcohol tests, scheduling additional background checks during the term of employment is wise. Any initial background check conducted only takes into account
information that exists at that time.

Running subsequent background checks makes sense. It will uncover any new dangerous or unsafe behavior of which you should be aware.

Doing an additional background check is also a great practice prior to offering a promotion.

Find out more about when and how to re-screen your existing employees here!

5. Don’t Be Afraid to Use Social Media as Part of Your Background Checks
When it comes to checking an applicant's social sites, “public” information can be of great help as part of the background check process. Many times profiles on sites such as LinkedIn and Facebook can actually help clarify or “round out” the information provided in a traditional resume.

The only practice that should be avoided at all costs, and which is in fact illegal in some states, is the request for any social media passwords. We predict that more states will follow in prohibiting any
attempt to obtain passwords for current or potential employee.

6. Use Background Checks to “Vet” Other Companies
Before deciding to do business with another company, run a Due Diligence check! We at API recommend this include a civil record report.

A civil report will include any litigation or bankruptcy in which the company may have been involved. Knowing whether they have sued, or been sued by, other companies or clients is sound

Don’t let the process of background checks scare you off. Using them wisely, and following these tips, will not only put your company on more solid footing, it will help you make better business choices.

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