Re-Imagine Your Hiring Process for the New World Ahead with Background Screening

hiring remote workers

It’s a coronavirus paradox. Even as unemployment numbers climb in some sectors, a hiring boom is taking place in others, and not just for frontline workers in healthcare, pharmacies, grocery stores, e-commerce warehouses, and delivery services. Recently, TechRepublic published a list of 70 companies in the process of hiring remote workers to fill the growing demand for computer and IT services, online education, and more. How can staffing agencies and employers onboard new hires quickly without sacrificing workplace safety down the line? Background screening technology may help. 

Accelerate the background screening process without sacrificing peace of mind

As COVID-19 spread across the United States in March, LinkedIn data showed an unusual surge in job applications for essential retail positions — up 88% nationally. What’s more, the abundance of applicants is likely to continue for the foreseeable future due to both rising unemployment numbers in some industries and a glut of job openings in others. What does this mean for organizations seeking to quickly fill critical positions? 

Start recruiting candidates now

According to SHRM, “A lot of people will apply for a lot of positions, whether they have the right skills or not. Organizations need to start looking for critical talent now because it will take longer than it did before to sort through all the applicants.”  Winnowing down a huge field of candidates will slow down the hiring process, but employers should resist the temptation to make up for lost time by taking shortcuts in onboarding new talent.

Vet new hires without missing a beat

Employers need to avoid a rush to hire. Despite the immediate pressure to fill vacant positions, companies still need to consider the long-term consequences. Lowering background screening standards for the sake of saving time won’t pay off in the long run. The wrong employee could put clients and other employees at risk and negatively impact a company’s brand and financial well-being. Now more than ever, staffing agencies and employers can benefit from using a background screening service to perform efficient, thorough background checks on your behalf.

Continue to focus on compliance

The coronavirus pandemic will have a lasting, perhaps permanent impact, on how companies do business. But hiring laws remain in place, as do the expectations of the agencies that enforce those laws. In fact, it’s feasible that new compliance requirements will come into force to better protect the health and safety of essential workers or address emerging needs in a post-coronavirus world.

Replace in-person interviews with virtual visits

Social distancing requirements vary from state to state. Some states have already moved ahead with Phase 1 of re-opening the economy.  Others intend to keep restrictions in place longer. As a result, employers need to adapt their hiring practices to minimize person-to-person contact. 

In addition to protecting the health of prospective new hires and those conducting interviews, the right approach also protects your reputation. Instead of a face-to-face interview, use video conference technologies to connect virtually with candidates. These tools are excellent for remote employees to virtually “meet” team members and do more than just put a face to a name.

Streamline processes and workflows

As organizations respond to market shifts, reducing hiring bottlenecks to maximize efficiencies is critical. Integrating your background screening platform with Bullhorn streamlines the hiring process, provides greater transparency to the recruiter, minimizes duplicate data entry and errors, and ultimately creates a better candidate experience.

Employers who adapt their recruiting, hiring, and onboarding practices now will be better positioned to fill critical positions with confidence while maintaining a healthy and safe work environment. 

What changes do you need to make to your process?

A routine assessment of your processes to ensure efficiency in the talent acquisition program for both the candidate and the recruiter is key when managing hiring initiatives at scale. Keeping safety, talent quality, time-to-hire, and compliance top of mind with a technology-based solution will help foster that outcome.  

For more information about how Sterling can help your staffing firm or to schedule a demo, contact Sterling.

About the author: 

Vincenza is the General Manager of Sterling’s Staffing, Retail, and Franchise group, holding P&L accountability of the business lines. She previously held SVP roles leading teams that supported Sterling’s largest clients in Staffing, Retail, Gig, and Tech. Her teams are dedicated to consulting clients on building best-in-class programs and her team efforts have driven 98% retention rate.


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