Spring is in full bloom and it’s a great time for spring cleaning and maintenance. During this season, so many of us take time to give our homes a refresh, get annual checkups, or detail our vehicles – all to prepare for the summer sunshine ahead. Maintenance in your HR world is just as important. Insurance renewals, refresher training courses, tax and marriage status updates, performance appraisals. Updating employee documents is just part of it.
The idea of employee maintenance and updates carries over to background screening practices too by updating employee background checks. Recurring screening solutions may help address critical fail points that could occur if staff are left unchecked for long stretches, including:
- Recent disciplinary actions, offenses, or crimes.
- Change in licensure status, including an expired professional or driver’s license.
- Reports of federal system abuse, or worse.
Rescreening employees allows companies to uncover new information or records that may have happened since the hiring process. Staying informed with employee rechecks is a proactive way for organizations to potentially avoid negligent retention situations.
Routine maintenance for employees
While spring is a great time to start thinking about maintaining your employee qualifications, the time of year and how often each organization completes employee rechecks may vary. The most common frequency for employee rescreening is annually but some companies opt for more frequent checks for specific employee groups. Since you aren’t racing against the new-hire clock it can be pretty flexible. Rechecks can even be done individually on a schedule or as-needed, but oftentimes are handled as a large-scale project of many employees.
Like pre-employment background checks, employee rechecks consist of the mix of background check solutions that fit an organization’s unique needs. The most common thing searched across all industries is driving records. However, organizations in certain industries tend to order industry-specific searches, like GSA and OIG sanctions reports for those in healthcare.
The rise of rescreening
The numbers don’t lie - companies are adding recurring checks at an incredible rate. In fact, over the past five years, there’s been a 480 percent increase in the number of recurring background checks ordered. Although recurring checks are popular across industries, they tend to be most common in healthcare, construction, and consulting spaces. Judging by this trend, it’s clear that what was once a rarity is quickly becoming standard practice.
But why are they becoming so popular? The truth is - things can happen after someone is hired. According to a report from background screening provider Verified Credentials, one in every 25 employees have a record that occurred after their hiring date. How comfortable are you knowing that up to 4 percent of your workforce may have a record that could have potentially disqualified them from employment had the record existed at the time of hire?
Adding employee rechecks to your list of “to dos” is really all about limiting your company’s liability, especially when it comes to negligent retention lawsuits. Consider the following two hypothetical scenarios: In one scenario, an employee was cited for sexual assault after they were hired. If that person were to then harass another employee and you didn’t know about their assault record, you could leave yourself open to a multi-million-dollar suit. Or consider an employee who was booked for two DUIs in the last six months. If they get into an accident while driving for your company because they were impaired, your organization could face additional repercussions. Employee rechecks may catch these kinds of records and help protect your company, employees, and clients.
The cost of NOT rescreening
You might be thinking, “But I don’t have the budget to add more screening.” But can you really afford NOT to? Employers that fail to maintain a safe environment from individuals that have exhibited dangerous behavior could be held responsible should the person commit a related offense on the job. In the case of this happening with a currently employee it could result in a costly lawsuit claiming negligent retention.
With an average cost of approximately 3 million dollarsƗ, negligent hiring and retention lawsuits can be extremely expensive. We’ve seen cases that have cost organizations as much as 58 million dollars. When you consider the minimal cost for rescreening employees, the potential cost of not completing employee rechecks could be vast.
Bottom line: Maintenance is key
The argument for adding employee rechecks is simple: Life doesn’t end after a hire date. Employees can incur criminal records or driving infractions at any time, meaning background checks are just as important for new workers as they are for 20-year employees. Staying proactive by regularly screening employees is a resource to keep you informed and ahead of any potential negligent retention situation.
Your high expectations of those you hire doesn’t end after they become employees. Maintain safety and consistent employee qualifications with periodic checks on all employees. Contact us to learn how to start your employee rescreening solution.
Ɨ Based on judgements/settlements from the following sample lawsuits: Rebecca Dow (Sierra County, NM 03-02-2017); Jones Express Inc. v. Edward E. Jackson, Sr., et al.; Erika Cadriel, et al. v. Woven Metal Products Inc.; City of Duluth & St. Louis County (St. Louis County, MN 07-12-2017); Doe v. MCLO; Allgeier v. MV Transportation Inc.; Janice H. v. Here Lounge; Reagan et al. v. Dunaway Timber Company et al; Baggett v. Total Transportation, New Mountain Holdings LLC