Applicant Screening is crucial for industries whose need for employees grows due to COVID-19 2 Apr 2020


The transportation, distribution, manufacturing and healthcare industries’ demand has changed in a matter of weeks due to COVID-19. This puts employers and employees in a tough spot to say the very least.

Balancing the demand and safety for these industries and more is something companies are struggling with and there’s no immediate end in sight due to the global pandemic.

With the influx on employee hiring in these industries according to Glassdoor, the need for qualified and true individuals does not cease.

Why Applicant Screenings are important

Applicant screenings to ensure a candidate has the training and license legally required to drive a semitruck, a valid background to become a delivery driver, work in a manufacturing setting or that a nurse holds a valid license (or held in certain states, due to evolving lifted restrictions due to demand) are imperative to the success of these industries. Certifications of qualified individuals don’t change with demand.

Background checks ensure that the general public, as well as these in-demand businesses, are secure and legally compliant.

Your business needs to screen new hires. For example, the transportation industry is legally required to run background checks on potential drivers. In fact, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires specific background checks for truck drivers. Running background checks protects your business from legal problems.

That’s not the only thing you need to be protected from. Truckers with a history of bad driving, like reckless driving, can seriously harm other people on the road.

Making an informed hiring decision also shields your business from negligent-hiring lawsuits. You don’t have to guess whether an applicant is safe to have around your employees, clients, and machinery. Instead, you know before you hire.

Don’t create unnecessary hiring mistakes due to overwhelming demand

With an increase of hiring in necessary industries, it’s enticing to fill in openings where needed and figure out the details later. Don’t take unnecessary risk while hiring during this crazy time!

DoorDash, a food delivery service, was sued for negligent hiring when one of their delivery personnel stabbed a restaurant owner. How could DoorDash be held responsible for an employee’s violent crime? The company used inaccurate background check results when hiring. The results it used hadn’t included the applicant’s previous violent convictions.

Unfortunately, faulty results are on the rise. With many companies trying to speed up their background checks, mistakes slip in. The result? Screening reports can miss crimes that candidates have committed.

Along with reports that leave out crimes, flawed background checks may also assign incorrect records to innocent applicants. Either way, you could get stuck with a lawsuit for using incorrect results to make hires.

How can you escape the trap of using inaccurate results?

  • Use a background check company that ensures accuracy.Companies that claim instant results sometimes lead to instant lawsuits. Choose a business that double checks its results.
  • Send a copy of the results to your applicant.Give candidates the opportunity to review and correct any mistakes before you make a decision.
  • Prepare an adverse action process.This process informs candidates that you may choose not to hire them based on background check results. It also allows time for candidates to dispute incorrect information.

Unreliable information makes sorting through applicants harder. You need correct information to hire a new employee or an independent contractor. Knowing the difference between the two will save you from the third trap.

Continue to follow federal and local screening laws

Numerous background check laws exist. While you may expect them at the federal and state level, background check laws are also found on the books of cities and towns. Keeping up with multiple regulations is tough, but essential. Breaking a single screening law can drag you into an expensive lawsuit.

Delta Airlines paid $2.3 million to settle a background check lawsuit because the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires that employers give applicants a stand-alone background check waiver. These waivers can’t include additional information.

Delta put so much information in the waiver that applicants claimed they didn’t understand what it was for. While the amount of information in a waiver may seem like a small issue, the federal government takes it very seriously. Understanding federal background check laws could have saved Delta from a hefty fine.

How can you avoid this trap?

  • Research your area’s background check laws.Start with federal laws like the FCRA. Then look at regulations specific to your state and city.
  • Use a knowledgeable background check company.A reliable screening company can help you ensure your procedures are legal.

Breaking background check laws can land your business in an expensive legal mess. Knowing the laws will help you sidestep the first trap. Now, you need to dodge the next trap: inaccurate screening results.

Background Check Information on-demand industries need.

Various industries have specific background and verification checks that are vital for making safe hires. What do you need to know before you run a check on applicants?

  • Credential & Licensing. Verify that all your applicants have the licenses and credentials you need and require.
  • Credit background check. Foster an environment of trust among employees by first getting accurate credit history information on every candidate.
  • Criminal records history.Balance legal compliance requirements with internal human resource workflows, yielding a complete criminal record data solution for your organization.
  • Driving & Motor vehicle screening. Obtain driving records from the various Department of Motor Vehicles.  For organizations that are governed by the Department of Transportation (DOT), it’s required you run a driving record screen on your employees before and after you hire them.
  • Drug and alcohol test.Pre-Employment drug screening is subject to government regulations, industry oversight, and your own employment drug testing policy. That’s a lot to navigate. Let us handle it for you, with flexible options to create a drug testing program that fits your organization.
  • Education background check verification. Education background checks mitigate the risk of hiring unqualified and untruthful candidates. Approximately 30% of applicants submit false, inaccurate, incomplete or misleading information to prospective employers.
  • Employment verification.Relevant work experience isn’t just a nice thing to have, it’s a must- have. However, with the hope of earning a better pay package, some candidates submit manipulated job experience information.
  • I-9 & E-Verify Background Checks. All employers must verify the eligibility of newly employed workers, making it illegal to hire applicants without proper work status. Simplify the I-9 and E-Verify process with our seamless verification services.
  • Identity Verification & Address History. Confirm the identity of your applicants without a shadow of a doubt before you hire with identity verification and address history background checks.
  • Reference Verification.Proper employer reference verification gives you the opportunity to acquaint yourself with a candidate’s abilities and previous work experience from a primary source.
  • Sex offender status.A registered sex offender likely isn’t a safe hire for your company.

Remember, we are here to help – we are in this together!

As the state of COVID-19 continues to unfold across the world, we understand employers and employees are strained. We’re here to help at a time where companies and individuals everywhere are doing their part to keep the globe turning. If you need help with screening new employees, we have your back.