When your small business is in the process of hiring new employees, background checks take on added importance so that you end up improving the odds of hiring the right individual/s for your company.
As many small business owners can tell you, it just takes one wrong hire to throw a company into temporary or long-term upheaval, be it office morale, financial problems or both.
By using background checks on each and every potential new hire, small business employers lessen the chances of getting the wrong hire for their company.
If you're in the process of adding to your staff and have not used or only intermittently used background checks, keep these things in mind:
- Stay within the law -- When doing background checks, make sure your company stays within the parameters of the law. The federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) has in place the national standard for employers who seek to know more about on applicant or current employee. The idea behind the FCRA is to make sure that reports used to assist in important decisions like those related to a person's employment are correct. Privacy is also a factor in protecting a consumer's rights, as the law limits who has the right to access employment background checks;
- What information can I learn? -- As an employer, you will typically have access through the standard type of report to learn about an individual's credit worthiness, credit standing, credit capacity, character, general reputation, personal characteristics, or mode of living;
- Which areas of employment typically receive the most background checks? -- When determining about whether or not you want to do a background check on an individual, note that typical industries where this is done include: jobs involving contact with children, the elderly or those who are disabled, positions involving major interaction with funds, those driving trucks, police, firemen, nurses, doctors etc.;
- Can I learn if a candidate has a criminal history? -- While no one wants to automatically hire someone with a criminal background, this is especially true for those in businesses where money is exchanged, there is a lot of contact with outside individuals including children, and where sensitive company information could be compromised;
- Make sure you receive consent from the candidate -- Before doing a background check on a potential employee, be sure to get their consent to protect you legally. By informing the individual about what information you want, you will avoid potential problems should the candidate feel they were slighted for the job due to their background, especially if you went digging around.
Doing background checks on potential employees, especially in a day and age where the Internet means there is so much information floating around; make sure you do the investigations properly.
With the right background check, you could be one step closer to finding the right employee.
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