5 Ways to Mitigate Risk when Screening Employees

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When hiring for a role, the process needs to be as risk-free as possible. But is it possible to avoid the potential pitfalls associated with recruiting - misinformation, outdated procedures, delays in time to hire - to land the dream candidate? Here we list the five best ways of avoiding the most common hiring obstacles and ensure your hires are checked, verified and ready for success.

The importance of an HR risk assessment review

When you’re in charge of hiring for an organization, a human resources risk assessment outlining the potential liabilities that employees pose to the organization is a key goal. This type of exercise helps control the risks associated with employee conduct, alongside the compliance of the employment laws around recruiting and firing decisions, workplace conduct, and working conditions. It identifies risks related to hiring, employee behavior, and workplace safety - to help manage a workforce and minimize any possible negative consequences.

To this end, an employment risk assessment helps reduce any potential impact on your business, reputation, and long-term viability as an organization. The objective of the risk assessment when hiring is to assist organizations in determining if the policies and practices in their company adhere to best practices. Additionally, the goal is to set up a strategy in the event of a major issue occurring, and the subsequent damage limitation and solution.

The 5 most common hiring mistakes that expose a company to risk

A hire has the potential to make or break a company - and it’s usually down to what seems at first sight to be fairly benign oversights within the company and its processes. These lapses in judgment have the potential to lead to glaring mistakes, with these being the most common:

1. Having a small pool of potential hires

Concentrating your vacancies to a small number of platforms is always a recruitment no-no. While a jobs page on your website and posting on social media are easy wins for getting your roles out, it’s always a good idea to widen the net by using more channels. 

Using a resume feeding system can help to increase engagement when hiring for a specific position or to increase volume when you're hiring. This not only increases the number of potential candidates, it also improves your chances of receiving more diversified applications. If you’re searching for highly qualified personnel, think about the trade publications that they read, the websites they visit or the forums they are participating in - and find ways of grabbing their attention through these media. 

Spend time crafting effective job postings that will draw the right candidates. A strong job description is essential, especially after the interviewing process begins. But you also need to write effective advertising text if you want to draw in the correct applicants. 

2. Not using tech like Applicant Tracking Software (ATS) 

Growing companies sometimes find themselves filling many roles at once. In the absence of a solid applicant tracking system, the procedure can soon become disorganized. By managing the complete hiring process from beginning to end on a single platform, an ATS saves time by collating essential data on to one safe, secure platform.

You can also utilize your applicant tracking system to automatically respond to emails, sending out replies and outlining the next course of action. Some ATS platforms also integrate with chatbots that provide answers to common enquiries. 

3. Skipping background checks and references

A lot of candidates appear excellent on paper, and throughout the interview, they spoke as though they not only owned the business but also intended to make it famous. Everyone involved in the recruiting process is eagerly awaiting their arrival; a welcome party has already been planned. But are they actually who they appear to be? Some candidates perform so well on interviews but may not be able to back up what they say with the right credentials. Others have the ability to perform but lack the skill set to "sell" themselves.

Verifying your candidates to prove that they are who they say they are is crucial, regardless of their interview success. From entry-level applicants who overstate their degree of experience to high-level employees who embellish their accomplishments, a comprehensive background check is a must.

4. Omitting an Attitude or Behavioral Assessment

In addition to evaluating if a person has the necessary skill set, it's critical to determine whether a candidate has the appropriate mindset to blend in with the group. This may not have anything to do with the candidates personally, but rather with who they are and how closely they fit in with the fundamental ethos of the organization.

For instance, if your organization values collaboration over individualism, a candidate who prefers to work alone may not be the best fit. A behavioral assessment can ensure that a candidate’s attitude, mindset and values closely align with the department they are joining, increasing the chance of stronger ties with colleagues and a better focus on the overarching goal of the organization.

5. Continuing with an inadequate evaluation process

HR is a fast-moving industry and new methods, legislation and tools are continually being introduced to improve processes. Despite this, many organizations are still employing traditional and often obsolete methods of hiring, while skipping the gathering, verifying and clarifying of information on candidates. 

With those companies that do not use evaluations or other scientific candidate assessment methodologies, inadequate and ineffective procedures may result in bias in the candidate evaluation process.

Improve hiring outcomes by implementing functional, behavioral, and personality assessments to get a whole picture of the individual. 

The must-do techniques for risk assessment in recruitment 

Implementing industry-standard techniques and procedures can transform hiring outcomes. Here are a number of effective ways that your business can improve its candidate hiring process.

1. Make best practise hiring assessments a corporate policy

Sometimes, the best way to improve risk assessment and mitigation is to enforce a best practice standard. By developing these types of policies, it becomes part of the company-wide commitment to the promotion of a safe work environment. 

Like all corporate policy, this commitment should come from the top management. While revising assessments and evaluations can appear to be an extra stage to an already pressurized process, it can carry huge benefits to business success, as well as the welfare of colleagues.

2. Include a criminal background check for every new hire

Instances of theft, violence or related behavior within the workplace could be reduced by including a pre-employment screening clause that covers criminal background checks. While some past misdemeanors should have no bearing on an individual’s employability, having information on a worker’s criminal past is of critical importance when hiring. 

By not carrying out criminal background checks, the businesses opens itself up to major vulnerabilities. In a situation where, for example, a worker with a violent criminal record causes harm to a co-worker, there is a case for a negligent hire claim. One claim alone has the potential to yield a multi-million dollar legal proceedings and settlement costs.

3. Ensure your hirers are equipped with the right tools

Investing in the right tools like automated reference checking software will never outweigh an expensive court case - and it can save time and money on unwieldy manual checks.

Reference checks are seen by recruiters as a crucial stage in the recruiting process, but much of the value is lost due to the time needed to locate contacts over the phone and the difficulties in persuading them to provide information beyond their job history and title.

Rather than complicating processes, features like web-based automation makes hiring the right candidate much easier and much more accurate than traditional methods.

Traditionally, a recruiter will call three references provided by the candidate over the course of three to four days, spending 30 minutes to over an hour on each. With automation, it takes the recruiter roughly two minutes to send a job candidate an email link. Then, the applicant initiates contact with five or more references to complete an online form with a customized inquiry. The vendor gathers the survey responses and produces an analytical report for the recruiting manager and the recruiter.

How to choose the right background screening tools for your organization

Credit reports and background checks may contain false information. The likelihood that an employer may make a hiring choice based on incorrect information increases when the screening organization is not meticulous about entering the correct personal information or ensuring the report matches the individual. There are also a number of internet background screening businesses that advertise quick results, inexpensive costs, and the lack of a requirement for prior application agreement. Any business that makes even one of these claims is most likely in violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act. 

Every organization needs to choose a credible source for background and credit reports. 

Veremark provides fast, accurate, secure and scalable background checks. These employment background checks can be used by all industries and sectors and by companies of all sizes. This employee checking service is completely customisable, so businesses can carry out a one-off check for a single employee or perform bulk checks on numerous candidates at once. 

Successful risk assessment in recruitment is highly dependent on carrying out the right background checks. Screening staff whether they are permanent, remote, contract, part-time or full-time helps improve business security and ensures employee wellbeing.

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What background check do I need?

This depends on the industry and type of role you are recruiting for. To determine whether you need reference checks, identity checks, bankruptcy checks, civil background checks, credit checks for employment or any of the other background checks we offer, chat to our team of dedicated account managers.

Why should employers check the background of potential employees?

Many industries have compliance-related employment check requirements. And even if your industry doesn’t, remember that your staff have access to assets and data that must be protected. When you employ a new staff member you need to be certain that they have the best interests of your business at heart. Carrying out comprehensive background checking helps mitigate risk and ensures a safer hiring decision.

How long do background checks take?

Again, this depends on the type of checks you need. Simple identity checks can be carried out in as little as a few hours but a worldwide criminal background check for instance might take several weeks. A simple pre-employment check package takes around a week. Our account managers are specialists and can provide detailed information into which checks you need and how long they will take.

Can you do a background check online?

All Veremark checks are carried out online and digitally. This eliminates the need to collect, store and manage paper documents and information making the process faster, more efficient and ensures complete safety of candidate data and documents.

What are the benefits of a background check?

In a competitive marketplace, making the right hiring decisions is key to the success of your company. Employment background checks enables you to understand more about your candidates before making crucial decisions which can have either beneficial or catastrophic effects on your business.

What does a background check show?

Background checks not only provide useful insights into a candidate’s work history, skills and education, but they can also offer richer detail into someone’s personality and character traits. This gives you a huge advantage when considering who to hire. Background checking also ensures that candidates are legally allowed to carry out certain roles, failed criminal and credit checks could prevent them from working with vulnerable people or in a financial function.

Transform your hiring process

Request a discovery session with one of our background screening experts today.

Periodic Rescreening of Existing Employees To Mitigate Business Risk

Conducting a pre-employment background screen and reference check helps to ensure the suitability of the candidate for the role by checking credentials and uncovering potential red flags.

But, the potential for an individual to introduce risk to the organisation doesn't end after they are on-boarded. An employee's actions outside of the workplace could become a liability for the employer.

Rescreening refers to post-hire checks conducted on existing staff members. Rescreening helps to ensure the quality of the workforce is maintained, protecting the organisation's reputation and limiting liability, whilst adhering to employment rules and regulations, and the wider culture and people strategy.

In this report, we discuss:

- Why Does a Healthy, Productive, and Motivated Workforce Matter?

- How Does a Healthy, Productive, and Motivated Workforce Deliver Exceptional Business Results?

- How Have Employees’ Nefarious and Damaging Activities Have Impacted Businesses Around the World?

- What Are the Emerging Employee Trends in Hybrid and Work-From-Home Environments?

- How Can Rescreening Existing Employees Lead to a Healthier and More Prosperous Business?

- What Are the Latest Employment Screening Timing and Recommended Phasing Techniques?

- How Veremark Can Help With Post-Hire Screening as a Key Partner to Advise, Plan and Deliver

- Veremark customer poll insights: The importance of periodically re-screening existing employees

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