Sunday, November 15, 2020

This Year most of all...We Give Thanks!


"Thanksgiving reminds us that no matter what befalls us in life, we can take the charred remnants and we can reconstruct a life unimaginably richer than that from which the shards and pieces fell." — Craig D. Lounsbrough

There is no doubt that 2020 has been a rough year. 

We continue to face a pandemic unlike anything we have ever seen in our lifetime. It has caused us to re-think how, and even if, we do things we used to take for granted ~ enjoy large family gatherings, go on impromptu trips and shopping excursions, and so much more.

We have also witnessed civil unrest, distrust in our institutions and leaders, and a nation often greatly divided. 

This has left many of us uneasy, saddened, and even afraid.

But no matter what we have endured, we need to remember the importance of looking past the negative and changing our mind-set. That means taking the time to recognize and cherish all we really do have and Give Thanks!

“When you arise in the morning, give thanks for the food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies only in yourself.” — Tecumseh

Being thankful, grateful, and happy is often a choice, and it can be a difficult one. We often find ourselves dwelling on all we have lost and find ourselves unable to see what we still have. Keeping focus on what really matters ~ family, friends and neighbors, and even our businesses or professions ~ makes all the difference.

And when we take the time to focus on what we truly have, we know we are blessed.

We have loving and giving family and friends. Even if our connection is now often virtual, we know we are always there for each other to lend support and a laugh. We feel fortunate that our needs are met, much more often than not. 

We are also extremely thankful that our small business has been able to hold on and our clients are standing by us. That means so much to us and for that, and so much more, we will always be eternally grateful.

So, while things are certainly different, and often difficult, we can rejoice and be thankful.

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow." — Melody Beattie

We hope that each of you can feel thankfulness and gratitude this year and each and every one to come. Remember, no matter what…..There is always, always something to be thankful for!

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Sunday, November 1, 2020

Can You "Speed Up" Your Background Check?

Is it possible for you to make the employment background check process go quicker?

When it comes to looking for a job, many find the employment background check one of the most daunting aspects of the entire process! 

By this point you have already done the interviews and have been offered the job. All it comes down to now is the successful completion of the employment screening. And it may seem that clearing this step is completely out of your control.

But that way of thinking cannot be further from the truth!

When it comes to “speeding up” and passing the employment background check, it really all starts with you! And the very best thing you can possibly do to expedite the process is to start by telling the truth! 

Tell the Truth on Your Resume/Application

Being completely clear and forthright with anything you say or list on your resume/application, in fact throughout the entire hiring process, is crucial and can make all the difference in how quickly and successfully you pass through the background check. 

It is also important that you have the following information on hand:

Employments ~ You will need to have ready the exact name and address of each company where you have worked for the past 7 - 10 years. Make sure you include a good contact, or two, along with a working phone number and email address. 

Education ~ Make sure you provide the exact name and location of the institution where you have earned your most recent degree, diploma, etc. You should also list correct and current contact information so the investigator and easily reach the right people and get the right information. And, most importantly, be truthful and only list a degree, diploma, or certification that you have truly earned!  

Past Addresses ~ Provide addresses for anywhere you have lived within the past 7 - 10 years, or as required by the potential employer. Make sure you are ready to list the entire address and the dates you lived at each.

Driver’s License / SSN ~ Have your current driver’s license or state issued ID and and social security card on hand.

References ~ When it comes to references, it is important that you carefully consider who to list. Make sure that anyone you choose is willing to act as a reference and has positive, relevant information about you to share! Be sure to provide each references’ exact name, working contact information, number of years they have known you, and how they know you. It is also important to forewarn each reference that they may be contacted so that they are prepared. 

Learn more in “Tips to Help You get your Resume ‘Background Check Ready’!”.

In order for the background check process to go as smoothly and quickly as possible, it is also important that you answer any application questions clearly and exactly as asked.

And if the potential employer or recruiter reaches out to you for any additional information or clarification, answer promptly. Not doing so can result in a delay that could have easily been avoided.

Be ready to Mitigate any Negative Findings

If anything negative is found during the background check, it usually centers around criminal history or resume inaccuracies. However, no matter what the case, it is important to remember that applicants have rights during all aspects of the background check. And this includes the chance to explain, or mitigate, the circumstances of these "red flags” or to refute the background check findings. Applicants  are essentially being given the opportunity to state their case. 

Relevant mitigating information can include:

  • proof that the background information is incorrect
  • mitigating factors concerning the information
  • efforts at rehabilitation, education, or training since the offense
  • employment or character references
  • evidence of successful employment / volunteering history pre and post offense

Learn more about what applicants need to know about the Hiring Process and their Rights here!

But no matter what precautions you take, there are times that Background Check delays are completely out of your control.

That is why it is best to know beforehand what they can be and what, if anything, you can do to lessen the chances of them happening to you!

Delaying "issues can range from incomplete court records to not getting the responses needed in a timely manner. No matter what the case, it can be frustrating for everyone.  

Employers are concerned with getting the background check information quickly in order to make the hire they need while applicants want to get the job as quickly as possible. Your background check company understands this. After all, their focus is on providing you the best and most timely response. And since outside factors can delay the process, it is best that you are aware of what they are and what can be done, if anything, to get your check back on track”, excerpt from “The Top 10 Obstacles that can Delay Your Background Check”!

The Top 10 Background Check Obstacles are:

  • Resume and Application Errors
  • Timing of your background check
  • Court Checks 
  • Court Regulations/Rules 
  • Employment and Reference Checks 
  • Incomplete Case Information
  • Power Outages and System Maintenance
  • International Requests
  • Government Shutdowns
  • Changing Legislation

Learn more about these obstacles and ways to mitigate their impact here!

The employment background check process does not have to derail or significantly delay your hopes of landing the job. The key is to be prepared, be honest, and be realistic that delays can happen. For answers to additional common Background Check questions, be sure to visit our FAQ page here! 

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