The Pre-Employment Mistake You Can't Afford to Make
We can all agree that hiring a new employee, especially at public entities and educational institutions, is an investment. An investment of both time and money.
Think that cost is high? Well, think again.
The cost of making a poor hiring decision is much higher. An organization can lose up to two and one-half times the amount of that person’s salary. Those expenses include direct costs related to replacing and training an employee, in addition to the resulting indirect costs due to issues such as employee violence, theft and fraudulent workers’ compensation claims. To minimize the costs of making a bad hire, a pre-employment background investigation program is critical for all public entities.
Traditionally, most pre-employment screenings, and hiring decisions, have focused on a review of basic information: the employment application, resume and an interview. All of which tend to rely heavily on information provided by the candidate. However, according to a 2009 study by ADP, 46% of all job applicants falsify information on their resume. This scary statistic roves it’s critical to validate information provided by candidates to be sure you’re hiring who you think you are. Types of validation include:
- Reference Checks
This helps verify a potential employee’s work habits and may include information from previous employers, educational institutions or personal references.
- Motor Vehicle Record (MVR) Checks
Drivers bring past driving habits along with them. Giving keys to an employee with a poor driving record can subject your entity to significant liability in the event of an accident.
- Criminal background Checks
Hiring an employee with a criminal history can pose a danger to fellow employees or the public. In general, arrest records cannot be used, and state and federal laws differ on the extent that an employer may consider an applicant’s criminal history in making hiring decisions.
- Child Abuse Checks
The National Child Protection Act of 1993 gives “qualified entities,” such as organizations that provide services for children, the elderly and people with disabilities, the ability to request fingerprint-based national criminal history checks on volunteers and employees.
The type and depth of background investigations needed depends on the type of job and its scope of responsibilities.
The first step in a establishing a program for pre-employment background investigations is to draft a written policy that provides consistency across multiple departments within a public entity. Before conducting investigations, and when the obtained information is used in employment decisions, there are several legal issues to consider. Contact Assurance to discuss your pre-employment plan with a trusted advisor.
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