In recent years, there has been an increasing focus on the importance of pre-employment background screening, and there are a number of clear reasons for this. Not only is a comprehensive, consistent screening program necessary to ensure that employers meet and adhere to workforce regulatory requirements, but it also helps employers to make more informed hiring decisions, minimizing business and workplace risks. With an understanding of the advantages of pre-employment screening has come a realization that this initial check provides a look at the past actions of a candidate and a snapshot at a point in time. This leaves a need to understand any potential changes in an employee’s behavior or actions that could introduce risk to the organization. Rescreening existing employees provides the opportunity to update an individual's background screening record with anything found during the course of their employment.
Employee rescreening is primarily focused on potential areas of risk, or used to ensure credentials are current, and is conducted at set intervals or time frames. Common rescreening checks may include criminal, sanctions, social media or professional license.
The Inconvenient Truth
The inconvenient truth is that existing employees are one of the greatest perpetrators of corporate fraud. In a fraud survey, it was found that the majority (38%) of fraud involved collusion between internal and external individuals, and more than a quarter of incidents (29%) were committed internally by company employees. These worrying statistics are also likely to increase based on the cost of living crisis and trends towards less direct control over employees due to a more remote workforce. With access and control protocols more difficult to implement remotely, the door has opened to increased risk of exploitation.
How Employee Introduce Risk to an Organization
Employee fraud occurs when two main factors are present - need and opportunity. Following the Covid-19 pandemic and the months of lockdowns and furloughs, financial distress was, and still may be. an inevitable consequence for many. From this financially vulnerable state, a need may arise and then an opportunity. With an increasingly global, dispersed and remote workforce, there are a greater number of opportunities than ever before. This could take the form of criminal activity inside or outside of the organization, a troublesome social media post, or actions that exploit the vulnerabilities of an organizations’ information, systems, resources and assets. Rescreening puts organizations on the front foot by proactively helping to uncover red flags and allowing risk to be managed - before it can become a bigger problem.
If you’ve previously missed it, Veremark published a guide that covered the basics of rescreening, from what rescreening is to why it’s important and the many reasons organizations are looking to adopt it as a best practice approach, even outside of mandatory requirements. But are you aware of the most common types of checks to consider as part of a screening programme? Let’s review the checks, and why each is essential.
Key Employee Rescreening Checks to Consider
We recently conducted a rescreening survey with a focused group of HR professionals and found that an overwhelming 73% believe that criminal and credit checks, in combination, are the most important checks to conduct. When you consider that criminal activity and an employee’s financial footprint may change during the employment period, this comes as no surprise. However, there are a number of other essential and often overlooked checks (which we’ll explore in more detail) to consider as part of a robust rescreening package. Have you considered them?
Typical Rescreening Checks:
- Criminal record checks
- Credit Checks
- Global Sanctions
- Social Media
- Directorship Checks
- Adverse Media
Criminal Record Checks
As one of the most common types of checks conducted on employees, a criminal record check is the cornerstone of an organization’s background screening programme. These critical checks help organizations make safer hiring decisions by uncovering past unspent convictions, conditional cautions, reprimands, final warnings and other information held by the police about the candidate. In addition, the check can identify whether a candidate is barred from performing a particular job role. In some cases, it may be mandated by the industry or through regulation. A criminal record check takes on an even more vital role for individuals that will be working with vulnerable populations such as children or the elderly.
What if criminal record checks are unavailable in a particular country?
While vital, criminal record checks are not legally permissible in all countries. Veremark’s intuitive platform shows you the availability of each type of check for each country. Should a check be unavailable, you can lean on the trusted expertise of our team to adapt your package to the next best available option.
For example, in some cases, a criminality check can be used. This check validates possible negative records for a candidate in various regulatory enforcements, sanctions and law enforcement agencies and institutions in over 100 countries worldwide. As part of a rescreening programme, Veremark recommends that criminal record checks be conducted on a standard cadence (i.e. either on an annual basis or every 2 years) and when an employee relocates to another country.
A credit check provides the employer with an overview of a candidate’s financial trustworthiness by providing a holistic view of how the candidate manages their consumer debt. The check uncovers negative financial situations, shining a light on red flags which could cast doubt over a candidate’s suitability for a role should it require access to data, money, company accounts or assets. In contrast, a positive credit check report may act as an indicator of a responsible member of staff and can also be leveraged to confirm the identity of an applicant.
Within regulated sectors like financial services, a credit check is often a mandatory requirement, one that is of paramount importance when a role involves additional levels of responsibility or access to financial assets or data. Credit checks are also becoming more commonplace in other industries as part of a comprehensive pre-employment background screening or employee rescreening process. Our quick guide to credit checks offers an additional level of detail where you can learn more.
Global Sanctions Check
A Global Sanctions Check confirms that a candidate is not included on sanctions watchlists or prohibited from working in certain roles. The check searches hundreds of source lists including watchlists, international government records, and key sanction sources from around the world to identify whether an individual is involved in specific types of criminal activity or is linkedin to terrorism, financial crimes, financial sanctions, exclusions, debarments or disciplinary actions. For some industries, use of a Global Sanctions Check is required to ensure compliance with regulations.
Results may report details such as the following:
- Politically exposed persons (PEP), close associates, and family members
- State owned entities and state invested enterprises
- Global sanctions lists
- Narrative sanctions (sanctions ownership information)
- AI-powered negative media screening
- Global regulatory and law enforcement lists
- Negative media
- Iran economic interest (IEI)
- US SAM
- Vessels information
- Beneficial ownership
Veremark recommends a Global Sanctions Check be conducted every 6-12 months.
Social Media Check
A Social Media Check is strongly recommended for all sectors, particularly within the fintech space. It provides employers with a more complete view of a candidate or employee based on an assessment of the individual’s online behavior and persona. By uncovering undesirable online behaviour, organizations can mitigate risk and help to maintain company ideals and culture. The Veremark Social Media Check leverages a combination of AI and human analysis to review public posts across 14 risk classifications for the top (5) social media platforms, the web and news articles.
From racist comments to derogatory or bullying remarks to threats of violence - online activity can represent a potential reputational and legal risk for an organization. Veremark’s Social Media Check provides the insightful data companies need to proactively mitigate the risk identified based on negative online behaviour.
Strengthen your Rescreening Programme with additional checks:
While a Directorship Check is not as commonly used as part of a rescreening programme, it can prove valuable depending on the role in question, and the jurisdiction. One example would be for procurement and vendor management roles where conflicts of interests may occur. Insights for this type of check include current and past directorships and shareholdings.
Veremark recommends a Directorship Check be conducted on an annual basis for applicable employees.
Adverse Media Search
An Adverse Media Search leverages a proprietary algorithm to identify negative news coverage about the employee from both online and hardcopy sources. The search includes news articles collected from thousands of media sources globally and is refreshed every 24 hours. Results of the Adverse Media Search can be use to help identify empolyees linked in the news to crime, corruption, terrorism, money laundering or other unethical behavior.
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