In the NAPBS ‘History of the Screening Industry’ learning resource, one of the most valuable sections highlights the five most compelling reasons, according to NAPBS, for why organizations should perform background checks on their employees, contractors and volunteers.
It provides real insight that we wanted to share with the MYB audience. Here are their key points, in summary:
The need to hire the most qualified candidate, and the inherent risk in hiring the wrong candidate, has never been greater. Workplace crime, unethical business practices, and misleading résumés are on the rise. The costs of fraud, embezzlement, theft and violence are a multi-billion dollar drain on our economy, bleeding organizations both large and small. Organizations owe it to themselves and to everyone with whom they come into contact to know everything they can about their employees and volunteers, and the most effective method to accomplish this is by conducting thorough background checks.
Background checks are being used today to not only screen prospective employees and volunteers, but also to screen prospective business partners, political candidates, board members, trial witnesses, community leaders, sporting coaches and jurors. Background checks are also an integral part of criminal, civil, or financial investigations.
Background checking has exploded in the workplace over the last 10 years. Some of the most compelling reasons organizations now conduct background checks are:
- Making background checking a part of an organization’s culture can not only enhance its effectiveness (e.g., through greater productivity and retention), but also its reputation.
- Background checking can supplant an organization’s loss prevention efforts by helping provide a safer environment for employees, volunteers, and others.
- The most common reason among employers for not conducting background checks is cost. However, the cost of background checks represents a fraction of the cost of: terminating an individual; re-recruiting, re-hiring, and re-training his or her replacement; and defending a lawsuit brought by a victim of a dishonest or violent individual’s actions (which can range in the multi-millions of dollars). Additionally, background checks may uncover a history of fraud or theft, and many organizations—especially retail companies—experience very high levels of employee theft.
- A background check may uncover deception. It can affirm an individual’s professional or personal integrity by confirming that an individual told the truth on his/her résumé or application regarding criminal, employment and education history.
- In some organizations and industries some form of background checking is often required—whether because it is mandated by law, or because an insurance company demands it.
Historically an often overlooked subject of background screening has been the volunteer. Companies and organizations are often so happy to have volunteers that they assume a volunteer’s spirit of public service and dedication to community denote someone who couldn’t possible have a blemish in their background. However, newspaper headlines in recent years have made it clear that persons with unsupervised access to children, the elderly and other vulnerable populations have blemishes, too—and sometimes they’re serious enough to put the safety of these special populations at great risk.
A simple background check could be the difference between an organization’s success or its succumbing to the notorious headlines or tremendous losses that can result if a diligent effort is not made to assure a safe environment.
Find out how you can get started with implementing a background check program at your organization.
Colorado joined New York in becoming one of the first states to expand gun background checks since the recent spate of mass-shooting tragedies. In addition, they have limited the size of ammunition magazines.
Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat in a Western state where gun-control issues are politically sensitive, signed the law exactly eight months after a gunman shot up a movie theater in Aurora, Colo., killing 12 people and injuring about 70.
In the meanwhile, the U.S. Senate has stepped back from some of its more controversial gun control proposals.
The signing of the Colorado bill comes just a day after Majority Leader Harry Reid dropped California Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s proposed assault weapons ban.
Sandy Phillips, whose daughter Jessica Ghawi was killed in the movie theater, told Hickenlooper: “You’ve given us a real gift today. Thank you so much; you’re leading the entire country.”
“I think it will make it more difficult for people to get guns who shouldn’t have them, and that’s really the goal,” Democratic Rep. Beth McCann added about the expanded background screening program.
Other Democratic gun control proposals still pending in the state Legislature include a ban on gun ownership by people accused of domestic-violence crimes and a bill to eliminate online-only safety training for people seeking concealed-weapons permits.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor last week suggested that Virginia’s background check system could potentially serve as a national model due to it’s mental health adjudications. Stats this week showed that it is indeed a system to be advocated, having prevented more than 16,000 felons from buying guns since it began in 1989.
State police records show a total 54,260 transactions have been denied during the past 24 years. The total also includes drug abusers, the mentally ill and domestic assault offenders. Virginia Commonwealth University criminal justice assistant professor Thomas R. Baker says the state’s background checks help to keep guns out of the hands of those who shouldn’t have them.
“I think that we can take a lot of lessons from what Virginia did and put it in place at the federal level, because there are a lot of states that aren’t doing what Virginia is doing to try and beef up the database for the background checks to make sure that we actually can do something that does have a chance at reducing the likelihood and hopefully eliminating it from happening again,” said Cantor, about the background check system last week.
“There are many aspects of the Virginia background check system that are superb,” Senator Tim Kaine added. “We are the best state in the country in introducing mental health adjudications into the national database. Nineteen states don’t put any mental health adjudications into the national database, and some states just do a few here and there, but Virginia’s the best state in the country in doing that, so there are aspects of the way we do the background check system in Virginia that really are a national model.”
President Obama re-emphasized his desire to see universal background checks on those who purchase firearms in his State of Union Address last night.
“Overwhelming majorities of Americans – Americans who believe in the 2nd Amendment – have come together around commonsense reform – like background checks that will make it harder for criminals to get their hands on a gun” Obama said. ”Senators of both parties are working together on tough new laws to prevent anyone from buying guns for resale to criminals. Police chiefs are asking our help to get weapons of war and massive ammunition magazines off our streets, because they are tired of being outgunned.”
Universal background checks, and the tougher penalties for “straw purchases” of guns, are some of the most popular gun-control proposals among voters, and both may eventually win bipartisan support. But a ban on military-style weapons faces an uphill battle in Congress, where Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) has championed a renewal of the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban, which expired in 2004.
While the National Rifle Association has opposed expanding background checks to include private gun sales, surveys find overwhelming support for universal background checks – even among the NRA’s own membership, according to the Washington Post.
CNS highlighted some eye-opening statistics at the end of the address, stating that there have been 65,376,373 background checks completed for Americans purchasing firearms since February of 2009, the first full month of Barack Obama’s presidency. By comparison, the number of background checks in Obama’s first term is 91.1% higher than President George W. Bush’s first-term total of 34,214,066.
While it’s certainly a start, it seems that the road to universal background checks for firearm purchases will be a long one, and the President will face many hurdles and opposition before the finish line is reached.
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor last week suggested that Virginia’s background check system could potentially serve as a national model due to it’s mental health adjudications. The state’s two Democratic Senators, Sen. Tim Kain and Sen. Mark R. Warner, agreed with him.
“There are many aspects of the Virginia background check system that are superb,” Sen. Tim Kaine said last week after a joint event with Sen. Mark R. Warner in Northern Virginia. “We are the best state in the country in introducing mental health adjudications into the national database. Nineteen states don’t put any mental health adjudications into the national database, and some states just do a few here and there, but Virginia’s the best state in the country in doing that, so there are aspects of the way we do the background check system in Virginia that really are a national model.”
“I think that we can take a lot of lessons from what Virginia did and put it in place at the federal level, because there are a lot of states that aren’t doing what Virginia is doing to try and beef up the database for the background checks to make sure that we actually can do something that does have a chance at reducing the likelihood and hopefully eliminating it from happening again,” said Cantor.
A lot of this simply boils down, once again, to firearm background screening. Cantor had said the week previous that he favored improving any national background check systems used to evaluate gun purchase applications, although he stopped short of calling for expanding background checks to all firearms sales.
A poll released last month by CNN showed that 94 percent of adults favored background checks for all gun purchases.
This week the President unveiled his sweeping plan to curb gun violence in America through an extensive package of legislation and executive actions not seen since the 1960s.
Obama is asking Congress to implement mandatory background checks for all gun purchases, including private sales; reinstate a ban on some assault-style weapons; ban high-capacity magazines holding more than 10 rounds; and crackdown on illicit weapons trafficking.
He wants Congress to expand background checks on gun buyers to include private sales and is using his executive authority to increase the information available in data banks in the background check system, highlighting background checks as the most efficient and effective way to keep guns away from dangerous individuals.
By closing loopholes that permit private gun transactions to occur without background checks, Obama believes that he can curb gun violence and mass murders, like the tragedy we saw in Connecticut just last month. The White House says nearly 40 percent of gun sales are conducted by private individuals now exempt from checking the backgrounds of buyers.
Obama is also ordering federal agencies to make ‘‘relevant data’’ available to the federal background check system and to remove barriers that might prevent states from providing information, particularly mental health data, for background checks.
Governor Deval Patrick this week signed H4307, “An Act Relative to Background Checks.” This bill closes an existing criminal history background checks loophole by authorizing the Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) and school districts to conduct fingerprint-supported national criminal history background checks on all teachers, school employees and early education providers in Massachusetts.
Prior to this law, school districts and early education providers were allowed only to conduct name-based Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) checks covering criminal history record information for crimes committed in Massachusetts. These CORI checks did not include any criminal history record information for crimes committed outside the Commonwealth.
“Every child in Massachusetts should be able to go to school knowing that they have a safe and secure space to learn and grow,” said Education Secretary Paul Reville. “I want to thank Chair Peisch and all of our partners in the Legislature for their work on this important bill that will help us better protect both children and adults in schools and early education and care settings across the Commonwealth.”
The key requirements include:
- School districts must obtain fingerprint-supported state and national criminal history record information for school employees, bus drivers, and subcontractors commissioned by the district to perform work on school grounds, but also gives investigators at EEC and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (ESE) access to use the results of state and federal criminal record checks in connection with licensure issues and investigations of alleged misconduct by educators.
- School districts, private schools, and special education school programs that employ licensed educators must share with ESE any information, including the results of state and national criminal history record checks, which might be relevant to ESE’s investigation of alleged misconduct by a license holder or applicant.
- All individuals who hold an EEC program license, EEC teacher qualifications, current and prospective employees working in an EEC-licensed or approved program, family child care providers, their household members (age 15 or older), persons regularly on the premises of a family child care home, and those individuals in an EEC-licensed or approved program who have the potential for unsupervised contact with children must undergo a national criminal history record check.
“I believe that this is a common sense, critical piece of legislation,” said Representative Alice Peisch. “Massachusetts will now no longer lag behind in this crucial area and the safety of schoolchildren will be further enhanced by implementing a national background check for adults who will be working directly with children.”
All newly hired teachers, school employees, bus drivers, subcontractors and early education and care and out-of-school time providers must undergo state and national background checks prior to the start of the 2013-2014 school year. All current employees must undergo national background checks over the next three years, prior to the start of the 2016-2017 school year.
The governor of the Central Bank of Ecuador has resigned after admitting that he lied about having a degree in economics. Pedro Delgado apologized for providing false information when he applied to a business school more than 20 years ago.
He finished his masters degree there, but the business school – Incae – discovered he’d lied in his application and informed the government. “I have to admit that I have made a serious mistake 22 years ago which is costing me very dear,” he said.
In his application form to join the Incae business school, in Costa Rica, Mr Delgado said he had a degree from Ecuador’s Catholic University.
President Rafael Correa, who is Mr Delgado’s cousin, promised to investigate: “A very hard day. We can confirm that Pedro Delgado had presented a fake degree at Incae,” he tweeted. ”It has been a big blow to the revolution,” he said, referring to his left-wing program of government.
Verifying diplomas with Mind Your Business, Inc.
Only last week, our referencing department found significant fraud while verifying a diploma for one of our clients. Take a look at the degree below:
Degree verification ought to be a key part of any employment screening program. With the economy still suffering and millions of people looking for work, job applicants will go to extreme lengths to get some form of employment. Make sure you run thorough education verification checks as part of your background check.
Contact us for more information on how to start or improve an education verification program at your business.
The unemployment rate in the United States decreased to 7.70 percent in November of 2012 from 7.90 percent in October, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
In November, 2.5 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, essentially unchanged from a year earlier. These individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and were available for work, and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey.
Since the beginning of this year, employment growth has averaged 151,000 per month, about the same as the average monthly job gain of 153,000 in 2011. In November, employment rose in retail trade, professional and business services, and health care.
Employment levels and employment checks
As companies continue to hire and new vacancies are being created, the importance of a formatted hiring process should not be forgotten. When you hire new employees, you want to be sure that they are trustworthy, reliable and professional – which can be achieved through background screening checks such as drug screening, education verification and criminal record checks.
For more information on implementing a background screening process, allow us to guide you in the right direction.
An applicant background check ought to be an integral part of any hiring strategy. In short, it’s the process of verifying a job applicant’s history, character and ability. By evaluating job applicants with a background check, you can ensure that they are the right fit for your business.
An applicant background check may include criminal background checks, verifying work history, checking an applicants references and performing a drug test. There are many different types of background checks, so it’s important to work out which checks are right for your potential employees and your company.
Why perform them?
There are four primary reasons as to why employers ought to perform background checks: Federal and state requirements, protecting vulnerable parties, preventing negligent hiring, and protecting your company from future litigation.
How perform them?
Your best bet is to hire a professional pre-employment screening company to help perform applicant background checks, as there as many pitfalls that need to be avoided.
Professional screening services will use educational institutions, government agencies, previous employers and criminal and civil courts to compile an applicant background check. They then provide employers with a thorough report on a potential hire.
What do they reveal?
Applicant background checks can include a variety of information about an individual, and what’s in a background check report would change depending on the check an employer was requesting and the industry their company was in. However, for the most part, an applicant check can incorporate the following:
Get started! If you need to perform applicant background checks, reach out to us today and we can help put together an employment screening program to suit your business.
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