Upsurge in Demand for Background Screening as Recruitment Landscape Evolves After Covid-19

The New Year brought massive change to most people’s lives and jobs as fear gripped entire nations facing the threat of a worldwide pandemic in the first few months of 2020.
Now more than six months later, many businesses are only just getting back to normal, having made massive cutbacks to survive the crippling coronavirus impact. With the reopening of businesses come sweeping changes in background screening and recruitment.    

Working remotely is a New Normal

Connected to the office while working remotely from home has been possible for years but was never really adopted as a corporate culture until governments urged us to stay at home. Even if you wanted to get to the office, it would have been difficult with public transport grinding to a halt, too.
Now the ‘new normal’ is for employees to work more from home. Corporations such as Google, Facebook and Twitter have all announced new policies to allow staff to work remotely for the rest of the year. However, with this shift to remote work comes new considerations in background screening for employees working out of the office on a more permanent basis.
Online security and data protection becomes a much more significant factor. Employers need to know that network connections between office and employees are secure to ensure the same levels of security as in an enclosed office network.
Monitoring employees while they work online is an additional aspect of human resource management but it’s a challenge easily overcome with a wealth of tools and platforms available on the market, many of which are highly customizable to fit with a wide variety of inter-department communication and file storage demands.

Deeper Screening Needed to Build Trust

Employers are not usually overly concerned with employees’ lifestyles outside of work hours but with staff working off site becoming the norm, an extra layer of trust is desirable to maintain the kind of professional conduct that is commonplace in the workplace but can become lax in a home office environment.
Someone working from the privacy of their own home might partake in an alcoholic drink or two or even a take on a marijuana joint, evidenced by a more than 50 percent increase in revenue from cannabis e-commerce and a whopping 142 percent spike in the number of people buying the recreational drug online between January and March 2020.
While pre-employment drug screening is commonplace, employers are looking to re-screen employees set to return to the workplace in the coming weeks and months. For employees remaining stationed at home a ‘virtual’ oral drug / alcohol screening test is in the pipeline.

Increased Demand for Casual Labour

For companies restarting after the covid reset, having already laid of significant chunks of the workforce, there’s a demand to replenish the employee pool with casual or contingent workers, especially in manual jobs requiring little or no training.
With the lock downs there has been a surge in grocery deliveries that has prompted an unprecedented demand for quick recruitment of temporary drivers and delivery staff.
In the UK retailer Tesco hired 45,000 temporary workers in March to fill in for staff unable to work due to covid 19 in stores and distribution centres to cope with a more than 20 percent rise in grocery deliveries during lock down.
The benefits for employers in hiring temporary staff include cost savings and a speedier recruitment process to keep up with demand.
A downside of rushing to recruit casual labour is the higher potential of someone representing the company doing something that could tarnish the company’s reputation. Hence there’s an increased demand to quickly process applicants with efficient background screening to check for driving offences and criminal records, which are time consuming and require dedicated manpower to ensure reliable results. Other background screening checks employers might demand include reference checks, qualification and ID verification.
Intelimasters is providing tailored background screening packages to help employers get back on track after covid-19. Click here to find out more about our employment services.


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