Background Checks

We are experiencing an interesting trend among a growing number of our clients  –  more and more are periodically re-checking their employees!  An increasing number of companies appreciate the importance of continuing to do background checks on their employees.  How often the re-checks are done varies with the employer, but our experience has been that re-checks vary anywhere from annually to every five years.

Annual re-checks tend to be driving record checks.  Checks that are done less frequently tend to be more comprehensive the longer they are apart.  At the five year mark, re-checks tend to cover the same types of checks as the initial background check that was done at the time the person was hired.

For employers who are contemplating initiating a re-check program, it’s very important to make sure that a policy is adopted that insures that every employee is treated the same.  If an employer should decide to re-check only employees under a certain age or of a particular ethnic group, he is leaving himself wide open to an EEOC charge of discrimination.  There’s nothing wrong with doing an annual re-check of every employee’s driving record – assuming that makes sense for that type of business; then a policy needs to be in place insuring that annual re-checks are done on all employees.

Depending on the type of business, establishing a re-check policy makes very good sense.  Just because a new hire came through the initial background checking process with flying colors doesn’t necessarily mean that, over the space of a couple of years, a poor life decision could have been made that might adversely impact his employability or job performance.  As always, it’s  better to be safe than sorry.