The statistics are nothing short of daunting. According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, employee fraud cost the country more than $600 billion in 2003 alone. According to the Department of Commerce, one third of all workers steal from their employers. The same findings suggested that 68.6% of employees who steal do not have criminal records. According to the US Department of Commerce, more than 30% of all business failures can be attributed to bad hiring practices.
There is obviously a big problem when it comes to hiring. It is extremely difficult to separate the honest and effective employees from those potential employees who will end up driving your business into the ground. That’s not all: most employers agree that hiring time is a time of extreme stress, which just adds to the possibility of hiring mistakes. Most employers begin their employee search when they are short-handed and short on time, meaning that the resources needed to make careful decisions are simply not there. Most employers want to hire fast, which sometimes means just cursory looks at potential worker applications. Combine that with the fact that according to Security Management Magazine, anywhere between 30% to a whopping 80% of resumes contain lies and you have the potential for real trouble. It is simply very difficult to decide who the best candidate in this environment is.
And making the wrong decision can cost you. Employers who hire the wrong people may find themselves paying extra in medical compensation, in poor performance from the employee and may find themselves robbed. Plus, hiring the wrong person can literally bring a criminal into the work environment something for which the hiring employer may be held legally responsible.
What Can Employers Do?
The best way to offset these problems is through a two-pronged approach: by carefully narrowing down potential candidates and by hiring a private investigator to run pre-employment checks. Any employer can deal with the stress of hiring with grace. The first step is to narrow down your list of candidates, if possible. You may want to leverage out this task to a committee of hiring personnel. Getting other workers in on hiring decisions removes the entire burden from the employer and can help provide hiring employers with valuable second opinions when deciding who to hire. The committee chosen to narrow down potential candidates should focus on:
- Credentials – Checking credentials is a must not every candidate is honest about their background and skills.
- First impressions – Although these can be fallible, getting a few different opinions can determine whether a candidate is personable and professional in presentation. Don’t forget: many customers and clients rely heavily on first impressions when deciding where to take their business, so anyone hiring cannot overlook this facet of a potential employee.
- Questions – Always call or interview candidates so that you can ask specific questions about their skill level and their ethics.
- References – Check references and ask specifically about the length of time an employer worked for a company and about specific skills used. However, it pays to take references with a grain of salt most candidates only submit the names of people they think will give them great references, which can mean a very one-sided story.
Even if you have carefully hand-checked each candidates file, a private investigator and pre-employment check is a must. Hiring background check experts is the most cost-effective, time-saving way to really know who you are hiring. It is the only real way to know which employees will not be a liability.
When Screening is Not Enough
Hiring an investigator lets you run a pre-employment check to check criminal background, verify resumes and check other personal background details. Background investigators can tell you whether employees have financial problems (which may make them more apt to steal) or whether candidates have drug abuse problems, or a poor driving history. Some background investigators will even run complete pre-employment screens on all your candidates, so that you do not have to pre-screen and narrow down the candidates yourself.
With an investigation, you get a more complete picture of a candidate. Background check companies and background check investigators simply have the hiring experience and background check experience every company needs to hire the best and the safest employees. Without these professionals, companies are simply hiring blindly and hoping against everything the statistics show that everything will work out for the best. A much better alternative is to look to the PInow.com Worldwide Directory of Private Investigators. PInow.com can help employers find the local background check experts they need right away.
NOTE: When hiring a company to do any type of pre-employment screen you should make sure that they are a licensed Consumer Reporting Agency and provide their services in accordance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act.