News for April, 2012

NPR Tackles Pre-Employment Screening Issues

Facebook HomepagePre-employment screening has been big news lately, as the rising use of social media for pre-hire screening comes into conflict with privacy laws meant to protect job candidates from discrimination. NPR tackled this sticky subject recently in a “Talk of the Nation” segment about just how far employment background checks should be allowed to go.


EEOC Issues Enforcement Guidance

Commission updates guidance on employer use of arrest and conviction records.

The US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today issued an updated enforcement guide on employer use of arrest and conviction records.  According to the EEOC, the purpose of this guide is to consolidate and update the EEOC’s guidance documents regarding the use of arrest or conviction records in employment decisions under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex or national origin. The EEOC’s enforcement guide is an effort to eliminate unlawful discrimination during the background screening and hiring/retention process.


Online Dating Sites to Perform Background Checks

Online DatingSubmitting to a background check is often required before getting a job, renting an apartment, or volunteering at a school or youth program. But dating?


What SMBs Need to Know about Pre-Employment Background Checks

Experts tell us that 80 percent of HR professionals use pre-employment background screening. The background screening market is estimated to be worth two to three billion dollars. Yet many small-and medium-sized businesses are still relying on old-fashioned screening techniques – i.e. asking for and following up with references – rather than conducting professional employment background checks. Unfortunately, this approach is outdated and potentially hazardous for an SMB. (more…)

After Trayvon Martin: Should Neighborhood Watch Groups Require Criminal Background Checks?

Neighborhood Watch Sign Now that the Florida neighborhood watch volunteer who killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in February has been charged with second-degree murder, some national experts are suggesting that neighborhood watch organizations across the country need to take a good, hard look at themselves.


Facebook and Pre-Employment Background Screening: Have We Gone too Far?

facebook like buttonIf you’ve ever hired someone, you’re probably well aware that every employer must follow FCRA privacy guidelines when conducting a pre-employment background check. The FCRA (Fair Credit Reporting Act) requires companies to inform applicants that they will be conducting pre-employment background screening. Employers must obtain applicants’ permission to do certain background checks, and if an adverse action is taken as a result of an investigation’s findings – say, an adverse effect like not being hired for the job – the employer must inform the applicant of this decision.


Top 2012 Trends in Pre-Employment Background Checks

2012Companies that fail to keep a close eye on legal developments regarding pre-hire screening put themselves at risk of costly litigation. As every attorney expert in employment law can tell you, pre-employment background check processes are not the sort of thing you want to “set and forget.” A strong, easily defended pre-hire screening process should be consistently updated to reflect the latest EEOC and FCRA rulings. Moreover, states and cities consistently pass new laws about how employers can conduct pre-employment background checks. To protect your business, it’s important to track pre-hire screening news and adjust your methodology accordingly.


Why You Can’t Just Ask Businesses for Employer Information

As part of a reputable business, you want to be sure you are protecting your company from the risk of unsubstantiated legal claims and lawsuits. Being associated with illegal or unscrupulous employee background check practices has the potential to devastate not only your company’s bottom line, but its reputation in the community, as well. In order to minimize these risks during the employment screening process, it’s important to follow the standard rule of retrieving only pertinent information via an employee background check.


How is Drug Testing on Hair Performed?

Hair under the MicroscopeAs illegal drug use becomes more and more prevalent, drug screening has increasingly become a necessity for many companies during the final stage of the hiring process. It would be nice if all methods of drug testing were reliable at quickly detecting recent drug use, but, unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. Urinalysis, for example, has been proven unreliable due to the fact that there is a limited window of time required to detect recent drug use, and test takers have found many ways to tamper with the specimen collection process.


Potential Hazards of Employment Background Checks

InterviewAs employers, we strive to build the best workforce possible. Oftentimes, the final step in the pre-employment screening process for potential employees is conducting a criminal background check. Even though we wish to receive the clearest picture of who we are offering employment to, making employment background checks a mandatory part of the hiring process always includes risks.