U.S. employers face many challenges when conducting background checks on workers who have lived, worked, or studied in foreign countries, according to a new white paper titled ‘Introduction to International Background Screening’ just released by Employment Screening Resources (ESR), a San Francisco, CA-area background screening provider accredited by the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS). The complimentary white paper is available for download at http://www.ESRcheck.com/Download.
“Every country is different when it comes to international background screening,” explains Lester Rosen, founder and President of ESR. “Techniques, information, and availability of public records usually taken for granted here in the United States are often times not available abroad. Each foreign country has its own laws, customs, and procedures for background screening.”
Increasingly, due to the mobility of workers across international borders in a global economy, American employers find they need to conduct international background screening on workers who are from – or have spent time in – foreign countries. Recent U.S. government statistics show why international background screening is so necessary:
- Foreign Born U.S. Residents: The report ‘Place of Birth of the Foreign-Born Population’ from the U.S. Census revealed there were 38.5 million foreign-born U.S. residents in 2009, representing 12.5 percent of the population.
- U.S. Legal Permanent Residents (LPRs): The report ‘U.S. Legal Permanent Residents’ from the Office of Immigration Statistics (OIS) showed 1,130,818 persons became Legal Permanent Residents (LPRs) of the U.S. in 2009.
- Unauthorized Immigrants: The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) report ‘Estimates of the Unauthorized Immigrant Population Residing in the United States’ estimated 10.8 million unauthorized immigrants lived in the U.S. in 2009.
The ESR white paper ‘Introduction to International Background Screening’ also outlines the difficulties U.S. employers face with international background screening – including criminal background checks and employment and education verifications – such as:
- Differences in courts and legal systems.
- Name variations and unique alphabets.
- Time differences.
- Different forms.
- Calendar and holiday differences.
- Inherent risk of fraud such as “diploma mills.”
- Higher costs and payments in foreign currency.
“While international background screening is challenging, the mere fact that information is more difficult to obtain from outside of the U.S. does not relieve employers from their due diligence obligation associated with hiring,” adds Rosen, an Attorney and author of ‘The Safe Hiring Manual,’ the first comprehensive guide for employment screening.
To help U.S. employers in their efforts to conduct international background screening, the white paper offers tips on performing criminal searches, education verifications, and employment and reference checks abroad while providing in-depth focus on screening practices in several countries such as the United Kingdom (U.K.), Canada, and Japan.
The white paper also offers employers recommendations for International Background Screening programs. “Although international background screening can be challenging, it is not impossible,” says Rosen.
The complimentary white paper ‘Introduction to International Background Screening’ is available for download on the ESR web site at http://www.esrcheck.com/Download/.
Founded in 1996 in the San Francisco, CA area with a mission to help both employers and employees maintain safe workplaces, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) wrote the book on background checks with ‘The Safe Hiring Manual’ by ESR founder and President Lester Rosen and is accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS). For more information about ESR, please visit http://www.ESRcheck.com or email Thomas Ahearn at tahearn@ESRcheck.com.