3 Background Check Budgeting Tips

Every organization’s budget is as unique and specialized as the organization itself. When determining the budget allotment for screening services, financial teams must consider the potential volume of screenings they will conduct and the specific checks they will require. Different industries have a wide variety of hiring and turnover expectations, and all of this must be accounted for in a background check budget.

When these expectations are measured and fine-tuned to each organization, they help maximize background checks while staying within financial margins. Even organizations that do not typically set aside funds for screenings should make a habit of budgeting for compliant background checks. The cost of making an uninformed hiring choice always exceeds the cost of screening an excellent hiring choice.

Here are 3 background check budgeting tips so an organization can keep security and informed hiring in mind while budgeting.

 

Tailor screenings to job descriptions

No matter how much room you have in your budget for hiring and recruitment, your HR department can keep background check costs low by carefully choosing what job titles require certain screenings. Some positions may not need screening beyond a basic background check, and others may need more in-depth checks based on the duties of the job.

For example, you could run a standard background check on every applicant but only perform driving record checks on applicants you are certain will drive for work. By performing an audit of your available positions and deciding the amount of screening each job needs, you can save money and only order specialized checks when they’re absolutely necessary.

 

Understand your industry’s workforce turnover

Hiring new team members can be exciting, but it includes extra—sometimes unexpected—costs. You have to consider the time and money it takes to recruit, hire, train. and screen applicants. By knowing the average turnover of your industry, you can better predict your hiring costs and avoid unforeseen expenses.

Some workforces can turn over more than 20 percent of their team each year, especially in times of growth. Base your turnover expectations on your previous year, then proactively set your screening budget to accommodate growth. As the year unfolds, keep track of your real turnover rate to make more accurate predictions for the next year. If you land on a relatively accurate estimate of your hiring costs, you can make better use of your background check provider’s services.

 

Manage your risks

The best thing your organization can do is save money, minimize risk and build a constructive culture. Background checks will help you make hiring choices that best align with your organization’s mission and values. When you budget for screening services, your investment is returned through a reliable, trustworthy workforce..

By properly screening each of your applicants, you’ll avoid the cost of negligent hiring and Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) noncompliance lawsuits. If you would like to learn more about how background checks can fit into your organization’s budget, contact the One Source Client Relations Team.

3 Reasons Why Companies Should Utilize Social Media Checks

The gold standard in background screening has traditionally been the pre-employment background check on a candidate before extending an offer. Times have changed, though, and so has the information available to onboarding managers.

While it’s important to know if your potential hire has been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor, falsified employment, or education information, etc., you may also want a glimpse at any possible behavioral issues the candidate exhibits that could put your organization, clients, or team members at risk.

A great way to gather this information is through Social Media Screening. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, or a scan of media and news outlets, it feels almost natural to pursue someone’s social media for a closer look into their life. Here are three reasons why many of our clients utilize Social Media Screening.

Enhance Safety Within the Organization

It’s crucial, and social media checks can aid in this process during onboarding. These checks offer information on applicants’ social media accounts to provide a more precise picture of their behaviors and personality online and limit the risk of onboarding those who don’t align with the basic code of conduct or your core values. Illegal activity, violence, or sexually explicit material posted on their accounts is flagged, shared on the report, and sent to the onboarding manager to review.

Prevents Potential Discrimination Accusations

Outsource. Outsource. Outsource. Outsourcing your social media screening can help diminish potential workplace discrimination during the onboarding process. Scrolling through an applicant’s account can put you in a sticky situation if you try to do the screenings yourself. You want to make sure you have an unbiased view so you don’t encounter compliance issues.

It can also go the other way. Suppose an applicant’s account shows potential issues involving race, sexual orientation, gender, religion, or age discrimination. Social Media checks will flag the content for review, so you don’t risk onboarding that individual.

Prevents Reputation Risks

Your team members are the face of your company and what you stand for. When they aren’t at work, anything they do or say can reflect on your company, good or bad. There is a lot of pressure for companies to be consistent with their policies and values with an online presence. Social media checks can show how an individual presents themselves to the internet – meaning you can see a report of any flagged content that might not align with your company’s values and could make your company look bad.

To learn more about Social Media Screening, check out Should social media checks be included in screenings or contact our Client Relations Team.

5 Reasons Why You Should Get a Personal Background Check

Aren’t we all looking for a leg up when on the job hunt? Simply knowing a little more about yourself might be the boost you need when walking into an interview.

Suppose you aren’t sure you know what is on your criminal record, motor vehicle record, and/or any other legal criteria. Whether you are new to the job market, diving back in after many years, or just curious, it’s a good idea to make sure you know what might show up on your background report.

Five reasons why you should get started with a personal background check:

  1. Avoid Surprises– When you run a personal background check on yourself, you eliminate the element of surprise when asked questions about your background.
  2. Check for Accuracy– Taking a deep dive into the internet won’t always give you accurate answers. Searching on public databases may give you some information about yourself, but the information has not been verified. We recommend working with a reliable background check company (like One Source) to receive accurate real-time, original source answers.
  3. Be Proactive– By running a personal search, you can check if the information on your report is correct and up to date. If you find inaccurate information, you can work to get things cleared up to ensure you are disclosing information to the potential employer accurately when asked.
  4. Get a Competitive Edge – In this day of age, you need any advantage you can get when searching for a job. Go above and beyond. Know what is on your background check to be prepared to answer any question that may come up during an interview.
  5. Peace of Mind– Job hunting is stressful enough. So, before you even start the interview process, choose to put your success first. Receive accurate answers from a reliable screening source.

Getting ahead of potential concerns and being proactive might make more of a positive impression on your potential employer. Overshadowing anything questionable in your past. Run a personal background check with One Source to know you’re receiving compliant and thorough reporting.

If you are interested in running a personal background check, start here!

Want to learn more about One Source? Check out our solutions page to see how we can help empower others with informed decisions. Connect with One Source on our social media LinkedIn, Facebook, & Twitter.

Blueprint to a Compliant Background Check Process

Conducting background checks is a simple way to help mitigate the risk of a bad hire, but they can add some trouble right back on your organization without being done correctly.

Background checks conducted by third-party background screening firms (like One Source) are considered ‘Consumer Reports’ by the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). What does that mean? Simply put, you must adhere to their rules and regulations and ensure you comply with the plethora of federal, state, and local laws. Not complying with these rules and regulations could result in steep fines, lawsuits, and sometimes even class action settlements.

Using a Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA) accredited background screening firm is an easy step to be sure you are building a team compliantly for your organization.

Here are Four Best Practices for Compliance to ensure you have a successful blueprint for compliant background screening:

  1. Background Check Policy

Before you start screening applicants for employment, it is crucial to have a policy in place. In 2012, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released its Enforcement Guidance on the use of background screening in the employment hiring process. What should this Policy include?

  • Purpose – Identify the reason you are running the background check; for example pre-employment.
  • Scope – What types of background checks are you running? How often are you screening applicants, upon hire, annually?
    • Not sure where to start? The Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) provides a great template to help you get started. Read more.
  • Process – How will you be reviewing offenses and determining what is acceptable or not? Onboarding should be consistent within position levels when making determinations. Onboarding managers need to assess the potential risks and liabilities related to the position’s requirements to determine whether you should onboard the applicant through individualized assessments if in the context of employment.
    • The EEOC recommends you consider the nature and gravity of the offense, the time that has passed since the conviction and/or completion of the sentence, and the nature of the job sought to ensure that the exclusion is essential for the position.
  1. Disclosure* and Authorization

Now that you have a screening policy in place, you are ready to begin the background screening process. The next thing you need to do is obtain Disclosure and Authorization from the applicant. The FCRA outlines this for employers, and the FTC has guidance available here. Disclosures* are only required under the permissible purpose of employment.

Be sure to:

  • Inform the applicant or employee that you may use the results of the consumer report for decisions related to their employment. This notice must be in writing and in a stand-alone format.
  • Gather written consent from the applicant or employee. If you want to use this authorization throughout the duration of the individual’s employment, you must state that clearly and conspicuously.
  • Review federal, state, and local laws and include applicable notices. Your screening vendor should provide these to you.

One Source provides all clients a compliant Disclosure and Authorization form, which you can find here

  1. Quality of Data

In the background screening world, there are two main ways that Consumer Reporting Agencies (CRAs) conduct criminal background searches. The first is by conducting real-time, original source record searches directly from the source. The second is utilizing a database or repository.

Database searches, while fast and inexpensive, provide non-compliant data. Record information is often not updated regularly and pulled from archived sources. These inconsistencies leave gaps and holes for outdated information and error galore. While these searches are often the most affordable solution, they can lead to costly lawsuits and ligation.

Be sure that your background checks include live, real-time court records. Original source records mean your vendor is going directly to the courthouse to obtain information that is up to date and as accurate as possible, eliminating errors caused by expungements, dismissed records, and recent convictions that may otherwise be missing.

  1. Adverse Action

Before making a final employment decision based in whole or in part on the background check results, the employer must provide a Pre-Adverse Action Notice, a copy of the background report, and their Summary of Rights Under the FCRA.

This process allows the applicant to review their report, and if necessary, dispute the accuracy of the findings. The timing and actions required during this process are crucial to staying compliant. You can learn more about how employers and applicants should handle adverse action here.

Don’t let the compliance of background screening seem daunting. The blueprint to a compliance screening process is simple; have a rock-solid background check policy, compliant disclosure and authorization forms, quality, real-time data in your reports, and follow the adverse action process.

The best part of it all is that One Source is here to help you through the process. Reach out at any time for a free review of your process from start to finish.

Reference Checks Made Easy

One of the most time-consuming pieces of onboarding can be the process of contacting an applicant’s references. Traditional phone-based reference checking requires finding time to learn more about an applicant. This can also cause delays on when an individual can start a position – leaving room for the possible loss of onboarding good, quality applicants for your organization.

One Source offers a leading reference checking solution to provide you with an online, automated process that delivers fast results. This streamlined process of conducting reference checks makes it easier for both the onboarding professional and the applicant.

How simple is it?

Once the account is set up and you select the questions you wish to ask. Which are either specific to your organization or standard approved questions, your account will be ready.

  1. The applicant and reference information are entered in the solution.
  2. Reference requests are then automatically sent via email or text. This makes it quick and easy for them to respond anytime, anyplace.
  3. The reference completes a short and confidential online questionnaire.
  4. Receive the reference response on a document that will be attached to the report to review.

The process is that simple.

A frequent complaint about reference checking is that applicants select references who will say only positive things about them. This is not the case because the survey allows contacts to respond freely and confidentially. Which encourages the reference to answer more honestly. 83% of all reference providers provide comments on an applicant’s areas of improvement.

Benefits of Reference Checks:

  • Reduce Turnover – Client research results show involuntary first-year turnover can be reduced by over 35%.
  • Increase Efficiency and Cost-Effectiveness – Free up recruiting teams from time-consuming phone-tag, data collection, and reporting tasks – so they can focus on finding great candidates. The solution provides a significant return on investment when you add considerable staff time savings, lower potential turnover costs, and reduce third-party expenses.
  • Enhance Satisfaction of Onboarding Managers – Provide onboarding managers detailed reports showing feedback, candidate summaries, and behavioral interview guides.
  • Convenient, Cloud-based, and Mobile – Makes it easy to get started and for candidates and references to respond anytime, anywhere — even via text messages.

If this service sounds like something you would like to incorporate into your onboarding, watch our recorded webinar, “Reference Checks Made Easy.” We go in-depth on how the reference process works through a demo, along with information on how this service provides you with more data, time, and money compared to traditional references.

Sign up to watch our webinar here! You can also contact the One Source Client Relations Team to learn about our other services to help streamline your onboarding process.

How to Personalize Your Background Screening Process

Every organization is unique in their own way. Different organizations have different needs. And that’s no different when it comes to building and maintaining internal teams.

So, shouldn’t your background screening process be made to meet those unique needs? What if you want to screen one position level differently from another position? How do you go about this? The answer: Customizable background screening packages.

Many background check companies offer generic packages with no option to customize your solution. Here at One Source, there are many ways to tailor your screening to what works for you, and the different position levels you hire. Therefore, incorporating services such as drug screening, employment verification, social media searches, and many more make it simple to do so.  Let’s dig into what some of these services offer:

Drug Screening

Are you looking to maintain a drug-free workplace? Whether for safety reasons or something else, adding drug screening can help as you work to maintain a drug-free environment. Drug testing with One Source combines drug testing results into the background check, streamlining the entire employee screening process.

Employment Verification

Employment verification is one of the crucial keys to finding quality. One Source contacts previous employers to verify: dates of employment, wages/salary*, rehire status, and more. Previous employment is the largest source of falsification on applications. That’s why we recommend you utilize this robust service.
*There are some cities, municipalities, and states that do not allow salary verification and/or have strict restrictions that come into play when requesting it.

Social Media Records

Social media screening may seem like a task your HR department can do themselves. But reviewing an applicant’s online presence isn’t exactly the most reliable or ethical way to conduct a thorough and compliant search. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) compliant social media hiring report involves a combination of technology and human expert analytics to correctly identify an applicant’s online presence on any publicly available website.

Motor Vehicle Record Search

If your business acquires drivers, a motor vehicle record search might be in your best interest. The information is obtained from the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) agency. The report shows information like the issue and expiration date of the license and if the applicant has committed any traffic violations, and if the license is current,  suspended, or revoked.

These are just a few of the many a la carte services we offer to enhance your screening. If you are interested in learning more about other services, check out more on our Solutions Page or reach out to our Client Relations Team.

Don’t forget to connect with us on Social Media, LinkedIn, Facebook, & Twitter.

Should you continuously monitor your staff?

When you are in the process of onboarding an employee or volunteer, it is routine to run a background check to help you make an informed decision. What about later down the road, though? What about criminal offenses following the initial background check? Continuous monitoring is a way to automatically screen your workers to make sure they continue to uphold the same standards you set when they first joined your organization.

What many employers may not realize is that it is good practice to run continuous background checks even after the job offer. Continuously monitoring helps protect your organization, employees, and customers, as well as prevent noncompliance that occurs after the hiring process has been completed.

Let’s take a closer look at continuous monitoring and how it works.

What is continuous monitoring?

Continuous monitoring is an automated search of over 650 million records, including a Global Report, Multi-Court Jurisdictional Database, and National Sex Offender Registry.* The individual’s names you choose to provide will be rerun each month to check for new records. If flagged, an additional county criminal, statewide if available, the search will be added to verify the accuracy of the flag.

While most organizations try and hire individuals who seem trustworthy, at the end of the day, there is no way to predict what the future holds when it comes to criminal activity. The concept of adding a monitoring service is to stay on alert to new criminal offenses and changes in sex offender registration to better inform you of the individuals working for your business.

*Specific to continuous monitoring with One Source.

How does the process work?

  1. Establish a continuous monitoring policy that is compliant with state and federal employment laws and regulations.
  2. Enroll in continuous monitoring service(s).
    – Monitoring searches can be customized based on your needs.
  3. Provide a roster of individuals you would like included in your continuous monitoring.
  4. One Source uploads the orders.
    – We will run an initial search to verify the names on the list.
  5.  Now the monthly monitoring process begins.
    – This will be rerun on the 1st of every month.

To stay compliant with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), verified records will always be provided.

Ready to get started?

Incorporating continuous monitoring into your screening process could be the difference in creating a safer environment for your organization. To keep the trust between you and your employees, make sure your continuous monitoring policy is clearly stated when they are hired and then reminded on an annual basis. You want to have shared expectations between you and your employees when you start your continuous monitoring. If you are interested in learning more or like to add this service to your process, contact us here.

For more information on background screening, check out our blog or get in touch today.

Connect with us through social media LinkedIn, Facebook, & Twitter.

How the One Source Certified Contractors Program Works for You

Certified contractors are sometimes essential to the operation of your business, facility, or team. They come in temporarily to renovate, consult, update and fix pieces of your organization. So, hiring them is often an easy choice. Contract workers can be extremely useful for short-term projects. However, potential risks can come with hiring them, so it’s best to exercise caution.

If you allow contractors access to your facilities and networks, it is in your best interest to background check them like any full-time employee. Whether a contractor is troubleshooting your computers, working with your plumbing system, or painting your office space, you should be able to trust them with your property and information.

At One Source, we offer a simple way to ensure the contractors you hire will be reliable and safe through the One Source Certified Contractor (OSCC) program. This program looks into the backgrounds of contractors to see if they meet a set of standards identified by One Source. Should the contractor fail to meet these standards, they will not receive access to your site.

The OSCC program saves you time, money, and resources because neither you nor the contractor have to commission or interpret full background checks.

When you check the OSCC portal, you can see if certain contractors are certified against a set of standards, which you can review here. These standards were built by background check professionals and are intended to keep you, your organization, and the contractors as safe as possible.

The OSCC program is part of the many ways One Source prioritizes the needs of businesses and ensures their security. The best part of the OSCC is that it is completely free for you to use. In order to run OSCC background checks on contractors, all you need is a contractor’s OSCC credentials. Enter those credentials into the search bar on the OSCC Search page, and One Source will check them to the highest standard.

Make sure everyone entering your organization to temporarily work is vetted with the OSCC program.  You can also utilize One Source’s comprehensive background check options. Learn more about how we can provide background checks for everyone in your organization by reaching out to our team today.

FAQs: The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is a federal government agency tasked with enforcing civil rights laws against workplace discrimination. They investigate claims against businesses for discriminating based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information. The EEOC also ensures businesses do not retaliate against those who report or oppose a discriminatory practice.

Agencies as large and impactful as the EEOC have a lot of influence over how businesses conduct themselves. It can seem like a big task to identify all the regulations they place on your business and whether you are following them. 

That’s why we have broken down some of the most commonly asked questions about the EEOC. Your business is likely already compliant with the regulations the EEOC applies to you. However, it’s good to be aware of what those regulations are. Knowing what they mean can further strengthen your hiring process.

How does the EEOC apply to my business?

The key factor in how the EEOC applies is how many employees your business has.

  • If you have at least one employee: Employers must provide equal pay for equal work to male and female employees.
  • If you have 15 to 19 employees: You cannot discriminate based on race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, or gender identity), national origin, disability, and genetic information (including family medical history). You also must provide equal pay for equal work.
  • If you have 20 or more employees: All of the above regulations apply. Additionally, you cannot discriminate based upon age (40 or older). 

What are my responsibilities to my employees under the EEOC?

Here is a general list of your main EEOC obligations toward your applicants, employees, and former employees. 

  • You must pay male and female employees who perform the same work equally unless you can legally justify a pay difference.
  • You cannot discriminate against or harass applicants in any way.
  • Your employment policies or practices cannot have a negative effect on applicants or employees. All policies or practices must be related to the job and necessary for the operation of your business.
  • You cannot use employment policies or practices that have a negative effect on applicants or employees who are 40 or older unless the policies or practices are based on a reasonable factor other than age.
  • You may be required to provide reasonable accommodations because of an applicant’s or employee’s religious beliefs or disability.
  • During the hiring process, you cannot request medical or genetic information from applicants. You may request medical or genetic information from employees only in limited circumstances. Any health information you do obtain must be kept confidential.
  • No one can punish an applicant, employee, or former employee for reporting or opposing discrimination or participating in a discrimination investigation.
  • You must display a poster at your business that describes federal employment discrimination laws, so employees are aware of their rights.
  • Keep any employment records, such as applications, personnel records, and payroll records on file.

What can’t I ask candidates during hiring?

Your business’s ethics will drive what you do and don’t ask in interviews, but there are some questions you legally cannot ask. Specifically, employers can’t ask questions about an applicant’s disability. They also cannot ask questions that are likely to reveal whether an applicant has a disability. This applies even if the disability is clear. You can ask the applicant to describe or demonstrate how they would perform specific job tasks, but you can’t ask about their disability.

However, you can ask applicants who have disclosed their disability or have a clear disability if they need specific accommodations. You also can ask an applicant to voluntarily report that they have a disability for affirmative action purposes.

What do I do if my business receives an EEOC charge of discrimination?

If you follow the above guidelines and maintain a positive, healthy work environment, it is unlikely you will be charged with discrimination. Still, it is best to always be prepared. Should your business face an EEOC investigation, you should follow these steps.

  • Review the charge notice carefully. It does not mean that you have violated EEOC laws, but rather is informing you that there has been a complaint of discrimination.
  • Closely follow the directions on the EEOC charge notice. The notice will likely ask you to provide a response to the charge or a position statement. This is your chance to defend your organization against the complaint.
  • Respond to requests for additional information from the EEOC, even if you believe that the charge is frivolous. They may help the EEOC dismiss the charge. 
  • Protect your employees from retaliation. Make sure no employees are punished for filing a complaint or contributing to an investigation. Retaliation is illegal, even if the original charge is dismissed.
  • EEOC mediation can help you resolve the charge quickly at no cost.
  • Contact the EEOC investigator assigned to your charge if you have questions.

Compliance is a wide and varied topic, but the experts at One Source can help you navigate ethical hiring with ease. Inquire today to see how we can collaborate to create a simple, efficient, EEOC-compliant hiring process for your organization. 

 

Here’s How to Fast-Track Your Hiring While Staying Compliant

Found an amazing candidate and want to get them on your team ASAP? Need some extra help starting next week? Sometimes, we are required to recruit, interview, and onboard new employees at lightning speed. But, that does not mean background check protocols can loosen.

Complete, accurate background reporting does take work and should not be rushed. That doesn’t mean background checks will slow your hiring process down. One Source completes most background checks in 48 hours or less.

So you don’t need to worry about background checks themselves slowing your hiring process. Background checks are meant to advance quality hiring, not hinder it. However, the most consequential part of background screening compliance—can slow you down if you are not prepared to manage it. The best way to get ahead and stay compliant is by preparing your team and applicants to understand what compliance is and how it works.

Generally, compliance in the background check world refers to Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) compliance. The FCRA provides a set of rights for applicants and rules for employers that you must follow to avoid legal issues. By understanding the FCRA and prioritizing it in your hiring process, compliance won’t slow down hiring.

So what does the FCRA require?

The FCRA promotes the accuracy, fairness, and privacy of information in the files of consumer reporting agencies to protect those subjected to background checks. In order to be compliant with the FCRA, your organization and your background check agency must take measures to gain the consent of your applicants to screen them.

The simplest thing you can do to stay compliant with the FCRA is to ensure everyone gives written consent to a screening. You can’t make any progress in the background check process until you have consent, so it’s in your best interest to pursue that as quickly as possible.

Including a consent form early in an online application is an easy way to secure compliance. You can also explain in the application how critical it is for the candidate to sign off on their background check. In the most quick-turn instances, you could give applicants a deadline to submit their application, which includes the background check consent form.

Once you have your pool of candidates who have consented to the background check, you can prepare for the next stage of the hiring process—background checks and hiring decisions. The FCRA states that anyone you run a background check on has the right to know everything in their file. So if they request access to their report, you must provide them with the information they have reported.

You can work with your background check agency beforehand to prepare for situations where candidates request copies of their reports. Overall, the best way to stay compliant while streamlining your hiring process is to be proactive, prepared, and collaborative with your screening agency.

A background check partner like One Source will have your back throughout the hiring process. And help you get ready for an efficient, compliant background check process. One Source has years of experience to support your hiring, and we are compliance experts that are ready to guide your hiring team. To learn more about how One Source can serve your hiring process, reach out to us! We will be happy to talk.