Safety programs that include drug testing, background checks, and occupational medicine are not new, and, for many businesses, are an essential part of the budget every year. However, as we look to 2021 budgets, there are some critical changes to be aware of and some standards that should not be abandoned at any cost.
As you budget 2021, consider prioritizing on-site drug testing, COVID-19 testing, vaccines for COVID-19 and the flu, machine assisted physical assessments, ongoing and targeted background checks.
Ongoing and Targeted Background Checks for 2021: Shield your business
Background checks have been making the headlines more than ever in the pandemic—employers desperate to hire, and being forced to rehire, their employees are hesitant to stack in another cost, but background checks must be done. Some employers see background checks as a step to slow hiring; however, the proper wording in a background check can protect both the employer and the employees from lawsuits to come or a false rejection in the screening process.
Additionally, as we move into the holiday hiring season, employers are taking on seasonal help despite the pandemic. How to hire those employees—is it worth it to perform background checks on employees who will never interact with customers? The answer is a resounding yes.
The things you find…
Background checks have changes in the past five years to benefit employers more than ever. Now, rather than a battery of screens for all applicants that is performed upon hire and rarely, if ever, again, employers can customize their screens and incorporate continual monitoring in those most critical positions such as driving, finance, and even your executive team.
Background checks are completely customizable, but often require the expertise of a partner in screening to create the best package. Here’s an example. One of our customers had struggled to fill a management position and was willing to by and large abandon screening for anything but criminal offenses. However, we recommended retaining a civil screen as this was an essential position for the company with potential liability. One of the candidates in the final applicant pool failed to pass the civil screen when it was revealed that he had been bouncing from company to company, leaving a trail of workman’s comp claims in his wake over the past few years. Had our client been performing only a basic criminal screen, he would have likely sued again.
What else have we found in a background check? Background checks are much like drug tests in that a potential employee will sit in front of you, tell you there’s nothing in their records, then pop up as positive for methamphetamines with a criminal record. We’ve found records with violent crimes, sex offenses, criminal drug and alcohol abuse…you name it. As people, we want to believe what an applicant says, but as an employer responsible for the safety and well-being of your customers and employees, you can’t afford to be caught unaware.
Background checks for Maximum ROI: Customized and Continual Monitoring
Customized background checks for major position types or responsibility levels in your company allows you to save money while protecting your business. You don’t need the same screen for a forklift driver as an accountant, but you do what to screen both. When you work with a company that specializes in background checks, they can tell you which screens (if any) are required by federal and state organizations and which screens are recommended for your business and the position in question. The specific screening packages is then kept on record and applied to every candidate as part of the interview process. That way, you only have to do the work once, and you will have the confidence that you are hiring safely and legally.
Continual monitoring is now an option for driving records, and it can make all the difference when several of your employees operate vehicles for your business. Instead of assessing all of your drivers once a year through MVRs, receive updates on MVRs regularly and act immediately on that information.
It is obvious that the economy is changing—more people are staying at home, and more drivers are required to operate a business. If you’ve made updates to your fleet or your team, it’s time to update your background checks as well.
Contact us to make sure your background checks fit your business now.