In its 2013 Employment Screening Benchmarking Report, based on a survey of more than 1,600 HR, security and management professionals, HireRight discusses some of the major trends that are currently affecting employers. Leaders in these organizations are grappling with a wide variety of issues, and many are turning to their human resources teams to help address them.
The Report reveals three key findings regarding issues that remain top-of-mind for employers today:
- Competition for talent continues to be a challenge, despite a weak job market.
For the second year in a row, employers have indicated that their top business challenge is “finding, developing and retaining quality talent.” Even with continually solid national unemployment rates, employers are still encountering issues with filling open positions, since available applicants may not meet the requirements of available jobs. This “employment gap” may likely be further complicated by an expected uptick in hiring: with the economy continuing to show signs of measured recovery, nearly 70% of respondents believe they will increase their workforce in 2013.
As a result, employers are focusing on improving the applicant experience to better hone their competitive hiring edge: 84% of respondents from larger organizations (those employing more than 500 people) and 71% of all respondents indicate they have taken steps to improve the candidate experience in the screening process during the prior year.
- Ever-evolving laws and regulations that affect the hiring process can make compliance difficult.
As they did the previous year, employers responding to the 2013 survey indicated “regulatory changes and compliance” as their second most critical business challenge. The past year has seen a number of changes in both federal and state regulations impacting background screening program policies. One of the most notable regulatory developments came in April 2012 when the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued revised guidance regarding the use of criminal background checks in the hiring process.
As a result of the EEOC guidance, most organizations undertook a review of their screening policies. Another hot topic for employers is social media – nearly 8 out of every 10 employers don’t use it at all during the screening process, likely due to regulatory and related privacy concerns.
- Employers must manage against a broad spectrum of risk factors.
Organizations today make many of their decisions based on mitigating a wide variety of risks. Employment screening plays an important role in this risk management function, as some of the top benefits cited for background screening include improved safety and security and reductions in negligent hiring risks, workplace accidents and violence, illicit drug use, and employee theft.
Furthermore, more than 40% of employers reported that they had experienced a workplace incident that could have been addressed through background screening. Organizations are also looking to address other areas of employment screening programs that can assist in risk management, like re-screening of current employees, background checks for contingent workers, and creating policy exemptions for states that permit the use of medical or recreational marijuana.
Free Report: HireRight 2013 Employment Screening Benchmarking Report
Discover tips for developing strategic objectives, related policies, and practical management of employment screening programs by downloading:
HireRight Employment Screening Benchmarking Report