On-Demand Services: Please – Slow, No Passing

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When it comes to background checks, taking shortcuts can be hazardous

Hiring companies frequently ask background check companies why background checks can take days. “Why can’t you just hit a few keys on a computer, like they do on TV shows,” they wonder.

The answer comes in two parts.

The first is that making it appear that there is one, easy-to-access online repository for every individual on the planet is Hollywood fiction. The reality is that, depending on the needs of the hiring company, multiple resources are typically necessary for a thorough background check.

Engaging them and waiting for responses can take days. And you can’t have that on an hour-long TV show. So the instant background check works – as long as you’re dealing with make-believe.

The second half of the answer is equally important: The information we  background screening providers receive may be erroneous, incomplete, confusing, and even be based on the background of a totally different individual than the actual candidate.

And that’s where careful auditing and quality control (QC) processes by become as vital as the data itself.

If you’ve been following the news, you’ve seen in recent weeks that companies based on the sharing economy business model, or peer-to-peer networks, have drawn fire for onboarding individuals with criminal backgrounds.

Companies in this new business model do not operate like a traditional employer/employee operation, and that break with convention may include more accelerated hiring of employees.

But this emphasis on speed may bypass or abbreviate conventional hiring processes which include multiple in-person interviews, reference checks, and other mainstays of old-school hiring.

When safety is paramount, skirting a thorough background check may leave uncovered evidence a prospective employer will cause severe problems.

Growth will demand an expedited hiring process, but hopefully not at the risk of compromising consumer safety and trust, by diminishing or de-emphasizing a comprehensive background screening process.

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Lewis Lustman

Lewis Lustman is a content marketer who enjoys developing materials that engage, inform, challenge, and hopefully entertain my audience. Lewis is a former journalist for Los Angeles Magazine and the Los Angeles Times, and has worked for a number of leading advertising, marketing, technology, and PR firms over the years. Interested in a topic that he hasn't yet tackled? Drop him a line in the comments section!

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