Why Background Screening Makes Sense; and what you need to consider when getting started.

Whether your organization is a Fortune 500 company, a small corporation, a sole proprietorship, or a nonprofit entity, trusting an employee means giving them access to the lifeblood of your business, and entrusting volunteers with your constituents places your mission in their hands.

The people who make up your workforce have a vital impact on your reputation as well as on your financial security and, increasingly, interns, part-time and seasonal workers, contractors, and volunteers do the work of full-time employees and are the face of your organization to customers and constituents.  The importance of successful hiring to sustained growth is greater than ever.

While there are very real benefits to background screening that involve personal safety and company reputation, the truth is that the expense of background checks pays off in dollars and cents.  Here are some basic facts that support conducting Background Screening (including Credential Verifications, Criminal/Civil Checks, and Drug Screening) on your entire workforce:

  • Nearly 50% of job applications misrepresent the facts, and over 33% contain outright lies.
  • The mobility of the workforce makes the verification process more challenging and time-consuming.
  • 37% of all employees have stolen from an employer more than once.
  • More than 30% of all business failures are caused by employee theft.
  • More than 79% of all negligent hiring cases are settled against the employer.
  • 1 in 14 employees in the US use illegal drugs.
  • The effect of drug use in the workplace costs employers $81 billion annually, and the impact of legal use of medical and recreational marijuana use complicates writing and enforcing drug policies for the workplace.

Much like the reality that you wouldn’t hire someone without an interview; the most prudent approach to hiring includes effective background screening during the onboarding process.

Successful businesses secure their future by integrating safe hiring practices in every phase of their operation (in fact over 90% of major corporations employ safe hiring protocols; and emerging businesses and nonprofits increasingly do so either because of “best practices” or regulatory mandates).  Safe Hiring Practices that incorporate background screening on the entire workforce benefit the bottom line; here are a few specific reasons to employ screens:

  • Increase hiring effectiveness.
  • Discourage applicants who intend to mislead.
  • Reduce the risk of theft and embezzlement.
  • Increase workplace harmony and decrease abusiveness or malevolence.
  • Identify potential management or discipline situations that can be managed with advance notice.
  • Decrease insurance costs.
  • Limit legal (and EEOC) exposure for negligent hiring and retention.

Background screening and drug testing protocols make sense and don’t need to be a burden to your operation or your finances.  While it is imperative that the screening/testing process be equitable and reasonable, you have the ability, both legally and morally, to tailor a program that specifically meets the values and needs of your organization, your staff, and your customers/constituents.  Experience shows that, when properly implemented, these programs are well-received by your staff and appreciated by your customers/constituents.

For more information about, or solutions for, Safe Hiring Practices, Background Screening, and Drug Testing, contact Benjamin Ventresca, Managing Partner – Brandywine Consulting Group, Inc at 610.696.1905.

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