The U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) has announced a federal contractor has agreed to settle “allegations of systemic discrimination stemming from the company’s applicant screening process” that discriminated against 795 female and minority applicants by denying them the opportunity to advance to the interview stage. Under terms of the agreement, the company will pay $2 million in back wages and interest to the qualified applicants, make at least 50 job offers to members of the original class as positions become available, and undertake extensive self-monitoring measures to ensure all hiring practices fully comply with the law. The DOL news release is available at: http://www.dol.gov/opa/media/press/ofccp/OFCCP20120576.htm. Continue reading
With interest in social media background checks skyrocketing lately, including a new study claiming that a quick review of Facebook profiles of job applicants can predict future job success, Attorney and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen, CEO of nationwide background check firm Employment Screening Resources (ESR), will present the webinar “Using the Internet and Social Networking Sites for Employment Screening: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” on Thursday, March 1, 2012 from 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM PST to examine the pros and cons of employers using information found online. To register for the webinar, the second of four in ‘A Guide to the Essentials of Safe Hiring eProgram Series’ with the Northern California Human Resources Association (NCHRA), visit: http://m360.nchra.org/event.aspx?eventID=38879&instance=0. Continue reading
Attorney Lester Rosen, a background check expert and founder and CEO of nationwide accredited background screening firm Employment Screening Resources (ESR), will be interviewed by Mari Frank, the host of ‘Privacy Piracy’ and an attorney and Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP), on Monday, February 13, 2012 from 8:00 AM to 8:30 AM Pacific Time on KUCI 88.9 FM Radio in Irvine, California with live audio streaming available on http://www.kuci.org/ (Update: To listen to recording of interview, visit http://www.kuci.org/podcasts/?ShowID=615). Continue reading
Attorney Lester Rosen, CEO of background check company Employment Screening Resources (ESR), will present ‘A Guide to the Essentials of Safe Hiring eProgram Series’ for the Northern California Human Resources Association (NCHRA), a series of four webinars offering HR professionals and employers cost-effective and legally compliant techniques to avoid hiring job applicants who are potentially dangerous, unfit, unqualified, or dishonest. The first webinar in the series, ‘An Overview of Background Checks and the Use of Criminal Records,’ takes place on Thursday, February 16, 2012 from 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM PST. For more information or to register for the webinar series, visit: https://m360.nchra.org/event.aspx?eventID=38879&instance=0. Continue reading
Attorney, author, and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen – founder and President of San Francisco, California-area a background check provider Employment Screening Resources (ESR) – exposed the leading myths associated with employment screening background checks to an audience this week at the 2011 Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Employment Law and Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C., according to a special report ‘Due Diligence Myths in Background Investigations’ on HR.BLR.com. Continue reading
In an effort to keep Human Resources (HR) leaders and professionals informed about the latest legislative, compliance, and regulatory issues affecting how they conduct day-to-day business in their workplaces – including employment screening and safe hiring – the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) will hold the 2011 SHRM Employment Law and Legislative Conference from Monday, March 14, 2011 to Wednesday, March 16, 2011 at the Hyatt Washington in Washington D.C.. For more information about the conference, visit: http://www.shrm.org/Conferences/EmploymentLawLegislativeConference/Pages/default.aspx. Continue reading
By Lester Rosen, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) President
The job interview, along with being an opportunity to find applicants who are a good fit for a company, is also when employers should perform due diligence and try to identify applicants who may be too dangerous, unqualified, unfit, or dishonest for the position.
While employers would not want to start the interview off with questions aimed at past criminal conduct or negative employment experiences, every interview must have a “safe hiring” portion where the job applicant is asked due diligence questions. This would be an appropriate time for the following five suggested due diligence questions to be asked in every interview:
- “Our firm has a standard policy of conducting background checks on all hires before an offer is made or finalized. You have already signed a release form. Do you have any concerns about that?” This is a general question about background screening. Since applicants should have already signed a consent form for a background check, they have a powerful incentive to be truthful, honest, and reveal any issues.
- “We also check for criminal convictions for all finalists. Do you have any concerns about that?” This question goes from the general to the specific. Employers should ask the question in a form that is legally permissible in their state of operation. It is important not to ask questions that are so broadly worded that they may lead to applicants revealing more information then allowed by law. Again, employers should make sure applicants understand that they signed a release for a background check and this process is standard company policy.
- “When we contact your past employers, what do you think they will say?” This general question, which indicates past employers will be contacted, again provides a powerful incentive to be very accurate.
- “Will your past employers tell us that there were any issues with meeting job requirements?” This question goes again from a general to a specific area, asking about matters that are expressly relevant to the job function or the workplace.
- “Tell me about any unexplained gaps in your employment history.” If there are any unexplained employment gaps, it is imperative for employers to ask about them to make sure the employment gap was not a result of some negative situation such as the applicant being in custody for a criminal offense.
Employers should always indicate that these five suggested due diligence questions are standard job-related questions asked of all applicants and that they need to be answered. Asking standard written questions in an interview allows for a consistent process so that all applicants are subjected to the same questions. Standard questions also create a more comfortable environment for the interviewers since they do not have to remember every question asked because the questions are written down. If the questions on safe hiring issues make applicants feel uncomfortable, interviewers can simply indicate that these questions are asked of everyone and they are required due to standard company policy.
To help design their own interview template, including these five due diligence questions, employers may access the Free Online Interview Guide Generator Tool from Employment Screening Resources at http://www.esrcheck.com/Interviewgenerator.php.
Founded in 1996 in the San Francisco area, 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®) . To learn more about Employment Screening Resources, visit http://www.ESRcheck.com or contact Jared Callahan, ESR Director of Client Relations, at 415.898.0044 or jcallahan@ESRcheck.com.