3 reasons to rethink your approach to background screening

The majority of businesses in Australia do a background check on employees at the point of hire, and never do it again. If they do, it’s usually once every three to five years. A lot can happen in that time. Here’s why businesses need to rethink their ‘set and forget’ approach to background screening.

1. You can’t predict the future

Less than a decade ago, police checks were only undertaken for certain roles. These days it’s the norm. The problem with one-off police checks is that they reflect a single point in time. They can’t account for current and future behaviour.

While you can’t predict the future, regular re-screening helps narrow the gap between the point of hire and today. Businesses that are serious about knowing their employees should consider having a more robust approach to police checks and background screening in place, which allows them to do checks on a regular basis.

2. The global workforce is mobile

International Criminal History Checks (ICHCs) are becoming more relevant than ever, as the global workforce continues to become more mobile. According to the 2016 Census, 33% of Australia’s population was born overseas, with nearly 20% arriving since 2012.

It’s currently best practice to undertake an ICHC and police check on anyone who has spent more than six continuous months overseas in the last five years. These individual checks provide a starting point for developing a comprehensive picture of the candidate’s history, to help you understand the potential benefits and risks to your business.

However, we believe ICHCs should be incorporated into a broader screening process that’s tailored to your business and the inherent risks associated with the employee’s role. This may include checking educational qualifications, financial responsibility, and identifying documents on government record.

3. You can maximise efficiency

Many Australian businesses are recognising the benefits of deeper background screening. Comprehensive background screening at regular intervals not only helps you manage risk and compliance, but frees up your team to focus on high-value tasks rather than tedious admin.

Since 2014, demand for ICHCs on our fit2work platform has increased by 1,100%. This trend is likely to continue in the years to come, particularly given Australia’s population and migration growth, new regulations and limited capacity for risk.

As Australia’s leading provider of police checks and background screening, we believe background screening is more than a box to check when you’re hiring a new employee. It’s an ongoing process that will help you get the most out of every employee.

Our fit2work platform provides ICHCs for over 190 countries and offers support via our local helpdesk and dedicated account managers. The platform is online, easy to use and scalable to the needs of your business. Contact us for more information, or visit fit2work.