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Universal principles of administering multi-country background screening for your employees

by Shakil Gour  on 10 June ’14iBGV services
Rapid globalization is driving organizations to expand their operations into multiple geographies. This involves engaging diverse multinational talent pool. One of the primary targets is to get access to best talent and deliver better-faster results to lead the game.

However, the importance of ensuring that the global workforce engaged adheres to the requisite organizational standards and complies with the local requirements cannot be underestimated. The organizations needs to ensure that risks associated with global hiring are well managed and mitigated. The downside to this may be the fact that carrying out International background screening can many a times be a big and overwhelming task and resultantly has put the HR clan to face the bigger challenge of international/ multi-country background screening.

If you are in the HR fraternity seeking a solution to address your multi-country employee background screening needs, ensure your solution addresses the following,

Understands the law of motherland
While it is relatively easier to get access to information about an individual with his written consent in USA, the same may not be the case in other countries. For instance, some countries in Europe provide criminal search information only to the applicant; this data is not accessible to third parties. It is almost impossible for the HR of the company to be well aware of local rules & regulations of varying countries, in addition to focus and deliver on the core aspect of their function.

Practices are tuned to address cultural nuances
In some Asian countries, for instance in China, Japan & Korea, it is considered disrespectful if a background check is performed on an individual. Applicants are likely to feel that their integrity is being questioned. Some cultures even believe that the screening process brings shame to individuals and, at times to the family name.

Overcomes the language barrier
To put in perspective, in India each of the 28 states has its own language and each language has multiple dialects. The diversity of languages in different countries and in many other instances the introduction of multiple dialects, makes the process of international background screening more complex. It is neither easy nor practical to find experts in multiple languages under one roof.

Ability to screen on time
Many emerging countries do not have the infrastructure to support the comprehensive requirements of background screening. Many other countries lack digitized records thereby making it difficult to access data as it is in physical format. This means each country has its own turnaround time (TAT) for different kinds of checks.

This in turn delays the hiring decision; in few instances, companies miss good talent because the background check took longer.

Has access to market intelligence for better risk planning
With an economic crisis and unemployment rates rising worldwide, applicants tend to falsify information on their applications. For instance, the Chinese government estimates there are at least 600,000 more degrees in circulation than degrees awarded. Due to population outburst, the occurrence of falsifying the information is higher to boost their chances of getting a job. If HR is aware of such facts, then it becomes easier to plan the risks better when hiring candidates from certain geographies.

Ability to provide universal solution
Dealing with multiple background screening providers can be painful for obvious reasons. A provider who services across geographies and is willing to package your employee screening needs under the same umbrella saves time spent on coordinating with multiple vendors and helps in enforcing universal service levels as well as standards. Candidates too can be assured of same interface and service standards irrespective of the geographies.

Technology & Infrastructure at a Global Scale
Technology platforms are normally the first point of interface to candidates. Ability to provide universal platform and technology assistance like integration with HRIS/ ATS system for cyclic flow of information can go a long way in providing the candidates “one-company, one-experience”!

These technology infrastructures provide applicants a seamless background screening experience with minimal intervention from the HR personnel.

Real time Support Capabilities
With today’s age of multiple time-zone work culture, ability to provide real time assistance to both the candidate and the customer is of paramount importance. The ability of the system to provide real time updates and the ability of the provider to provide minimum of 24×5 support cannot be under-estimated.

Ability to Operate within Budget
Pricing is always the final deciding factor. It is important that the cost associated with administering the background screening does not burn a hole in your pocket. It has to be competitive as well as has the ability to provide standard pricing across all geographies with minimum exceptions.

If you are you on the lookout for a business partner to help overcome the international screening hurdles? Write to us at irene.jones@neeyamo.com

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Irene Jones

HRO Evangelist & Thought Leader

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