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Background Checks: Tools for Cautious Hiring, Even in a Tight Labor Market

In today’s tight labor market, hiring can be a challenge for any business. When a seemingly high-quality resume hits the top of the pile, it can be tempting to move quickly through the recruitment process so as to not lose this top talent to a competing offer. A quick and efficient hiring process is undoubtedly an asset when businesses are trying to appeal to candidates, but one recruitment step that should not be skipped is background screening. Background checks can be important for a number of reasons – especially in industries like healthcare, homecare, education, financial services, and transportation – but are many times overlooked. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) reported that one study conducted by CareerBuilder found 54 percent of small businesses had noted a lie on an applicant’s resume. Background checks can help employers determine the most qualified talent, better ensure they meet job qualifications, and help mitigate future risk. From checking references to verifying a candidate’s resume to running a criminal background check, conducting such necessary screenings can help protect businesses from avoidable turnover and risk. Some of the red flags background checks can help reveal are resume inflation, fraud, theft, substance abuse, and threats to workplace safety. Depending on varying business needs, applicable legal restrictions and the nature of current open positions, there are many different forms of pre-hire screening, including reference checks for resume verification, criminal background checks, in-depth background checks, credit checks, and social media background checks. The primary sources of investigation for a background check may include: National criminal database Social Security Number verification National sex-offender registry Motor vehicle reports Employment verification Education verification Drug testing Industry-specific checks (i.e. required certification) In order to capture a full range of information when attempting to successfully complete a background check, many companies choose to partner with an Employment Screening Resource (ESR), for their employment screening services. An ESR firm can help conduct some of the screenings named above, as well as help ensure businesses comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and other applicable federal and state laws in place to protect…

Paychex Survey Says Entrepreneurs Optimistic About Business Outlook, Ability to Find New Customers

Are you wondering whether now is the right time to start a business? Are customers out there? Is the economy optimistic or pessimistic? According to Paychex and their first ever Business Sentiment Report, the outlook for businesses is more positive than negative. Paychex regularly conducts polls to analyze the business climate. Their most recent poll can be found here. Paychex polled businesses with 500 or fewer employees regarding issues relating to human resources, finances, and customer relations. In the poll, respondents could answer on a scale of 1 to 100 with 1 being completely pessimistic and 100 being totally optimistic. The overall business outlook was good, except when it comes to finding employees. Paychex will continue to poll businesses on a trimester basis, with the most recent poll representing 500 randomly selected businesses for Summer 2018. These businesses were polled during the week of June 18 and June 27, 2018. The business outlook overall was 65/100. They felt that they were most optimistic about finding new customers, which was rated 69/100. Other optimistic ratings were about access to capital 62/10, capital investment opportunity 59/100, and the overall economy 60/100. In the academic world, 60/100 is a D and a below-average score. But in this poll, 60 is a good number. Of course, it is not as high as 100, but it is closer to 100 than to 1, which is why it is considered an optimistic number. In the poll, businesses in the Midwestern and Southern states were more optimistic than in other areas of the country. On the flip side, employers were not optimistic about finding new talent to fill their empty positions. They rated finding part-time or full-time employees at 31/100. Interestingly, they were notably pessimistic about finding contract or temporary employees. This rating was 16/100. There are ways to become more optimistic about finding new employees through recruitment and other “outside of the box” ideas. According to the respondents, manufacturing businesses have the most difficulty finding qualified employees. For those companies to find skilled employees, they are turning to the schools that prepare them. They are looking…

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