Inadequate Employee Screening Could Result in Financial Damage for APAC Companies

Companies may face higher risks if they do not conduct adequate screening of candidates or rescreen existing employees, according to the 2016 HireRight APAC Employment Screening Benchmark Report.

More than half (59%) of the organisations surveyed have uncovered discrepancies throughout their employee screening process that would otherwise have been missed. Commonly uncovered problems include inflating salaries and job titles, falsifying educational qualifications and making up reasons for resignations.

Importance of rescreening existing employees

Most companies might assume background screening is only necessary for new hires. However, the report found that one of the most overlooked areas was rescreening of existing employees with four out of five (80%) companies stating they do not rescreen employees at promotion.

Some companies only initiate screening for senior employees which means people who work their way up the ladder might move into leadership positions without ever being background checked.

“Conducting background checks on candidates might be a norm for most organisations – but as they continue to gain increased access to talent pools across the world, potential threats grow too, making companies that much more susceptible to hiring risks and vulnerabilities," says Steve Girdler, Managing Director of APAC and EMEA, HireRight.

"These threats appear both in terms of the authenticity of candidates and the potential threat they pose to a company’s employees, customers, intellectual property, and reputation.”

Screening international imployees

Businesses are embracing the access to an enlarged talent pool that is provided by a progressively connected world, in light of the recent establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), which aims to reduce business costs and allow for seamless travel within the 10-country grouping, increasing the scale of talent exchanges within the region.

Specifically to Singapore, almost one in four (23.9%) of the Professional, Managerial, Executive and Technical (PMET) workforce in 2015 were foreigners, according to the Ministry of Manpower.

However, despite this global workforce, less than half of organisations (42%) screen international candidates. This can pose a gap in an employer’s screening program as international moves can be a means by which candidates may try to escape negative records.

In addition, for locals who have been studying or working overseas before returning to their home country to work, only 29% of companies screen their international backgrounds, which can pose risks to organizations.

The study also found that nearly two thirds (63%) of companies consider hiring, retaining and developing talent one of their most significant business challenges.

One in three (33%) of companies consider the use of technology and analytics to be one of their greatest challenges.