Last week I had the privilege of attending an enlightening discussion led by Robert Johnson, Director of Economic Analysis at Morningstar, on today’s labor market and how the greater economy continues to impact employment. And one of the seminal messages communicated was that we should all stop reading the news paper.
Sure, the economy isn’t great and unemployment is still too high, but Johnson talked about some of the fundamentals that aren’t being reported. For instance, unemployment is at just 4% for those who have a college degree. He pointed out that are a number sectors that can’t hire enough people, highlighting the fact that it is becoming impossible to fill some of the available positions (i.e. engineers or nurses). He talked about how the economies in Europe and Asia are far worse off than we are and how us consumer confidence and spending has been brisk for quite some time. And the big observation was that the housing sector appears to be on the rise. Put all of these factors together, and Johnson is encouraged by the prospect of continued job creation over the next year. That’s great news for all of us.
As I had an opportunity to digest this information, my prevailing thought was that employers will again have to return to ensuring the best possible candidate experience. To their credit, many have recognized this and “improving the candidate experience” has been HR’s favorite buzz phrase for a while now. In most instances, employers have embraced this concept and made the hiring process better. But there is one key area we still think the candidate experience is being overlooked and that is applying it their employment background screening process.
We have a few ideas in this regard and thought we would take the opportunity to update an article we published a couple years ago on the topic. Everything starts with the premise that no matter if you have something to hide or not, an employment background check can be a scary process. We’ve all seen stories about people being turned away from jobs based on information that belonged to someone else. In some cases, these people weren’t afforded their rights to dispute the information.
You Had Me At Hello: Background Screening, Your Brand and the Candidate Experience, is a must-read for employers and HR professionals. The article reveals how background checks can directly impact your company’s image with candidates, both positively and negatively, and how to enhance and protect your brand through transparency, verification and proper selection of a screening firm.