4 Things Small Businesses Can Do to Improve Their Screening Program

More small businesses have started performing background checks on applicants to improve their quality of hire. However, there could be some things these small businesses are overlooking that could be exposing themselves to risk. Here are four things small businesses should be doing to eliminate any gas in the screening process to better protect themselves.

1) Put the Policy in Writing

Your business needs to have a written employment screening policy to have a successful program. By having the policy in writing, you protect your business and provide clear expectations to the prospective hire. According to HireRight Small Business Spotlight, 29 percent of small business respondents plan to create a formal screening policy, while 19 percent plan on drafting a policy that is specific to drug, alcohol, and health screening.

By having a written policy for your employee screening, you can protect your company from potential claims of discrimination and assist in regulatory audits. This will also give your human resources personnel clear expectations of what your screening standards are.

2) Strengthen Your Criminal Checks

Criminal background checks are conducted by 88 percent of small businesses, but the effectiveness of their screening program will depend on the types of criminal background checks conducted.

There may be gaps in the criminal background checks bases on the search criteria (Ex: geography and time frame). Some employers only conduct a background check during the hiring process for full-time employees and never check for criminal offenses after the person has been employed by the company.

3) Check More Than Just Criminal History

Background screening providers can help small businesses enhance their screening programs effortlessly. However, less than half of all small business employers conduct background checks beyond basic criminal and identity checks.

It is important to also check for a candidate’s employment and education history, along with their motor vehicle records. This information could provide you with crucial red flags that would impact the hiring decision.

By using a background screening company to conduct on-demand background checks, you can easily get information on applicants. The background screening company can run several types of background checks at one time to give you a better insight onto the person applying to your company. By knowing their actual employment and education history, you can ensure that the person actually meets your requirements and was honest on their application.

4) Reassess your Program

More than half of small businesses are not regularly assessing their employee screening standards. It is important small businesses self-assess their employment screening program at least once per year. State and federal regulations evolve, and employers need to re-evaluate their screening programs to continually protect themselves from legal risks. Legislative changes can impact their hiring process, such as the use of medical marijuana, and the requirements for worker eligibility. It is important to stay up to date on any new legislation to protect your business.

By following these four tips you can better protect your business and have an effective background screening program that will help you hire the best, most qualified applicants.