The Office of Personnel Management advocates the use of Pre-Employment Screening as an important part of workplace violence prevention.
Waltham, MA (PRWEB) January 25, 2012
Increasingly, workplace violence has become a critical concern for human resources departments and the population as a whole. On September 8, 2011 OSHA released a directive on Enforcement Procedures for Investigating or Inspecting Incidents of Workplace Violence. Workplace violence is defined by OSHA as: ... violence or the threat of violence against workers. It can occur at or outside the workplace and can range from threats and verbal abuse to physical assaults and homicide, one of the leading causes of job-related deaths. http://www.osha.gov/OshDoc/data_General_Facts/factsheet-workplace-violence.pdf
The purpose of this directive is clearly stated:
Workplace violence is a serious recognized occupational hazard, ranking among the top four causes of death in workplaces during the past 15 years. More than 3,000 people died from workplace homicide between 2006 and 2010, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Additional BLS data indicate that an average of more than 15,000 nonfatal workplace injury cases was reported annually during this time.
Concurrently, recent guidelines from the Office of Personnel Management advocates the use of pre-employment screening as an "important part of Workplace prevention." To highlight the importance of screening it continues:
Prior to hiring an employee, the agency should check with its servicing personnel office and legal office, if necessary, to determine what pre-employment screening techniques (such as interview questions, background and reference checks, and drug testing) are appropriate for the position under consideration and are consistent with Federal laws and regulations.
It is easy to site statistics that pre-employment background screening is on the rise. But how extensive are these screenings? How deep do these background checks go? What level of information are they drawing upon? Pulling a single county criminal record may not provide the perspective a hiring manager requires in considering a candidates past. Also, continuing changes in technology may allow reports to be drawn quickly but how does one verify the authenticity and accuracy of these reports? In house background screening may rely on out-dated practices, might not have advantages of current information, and depends on time-availability of employees. Further, one must consider the consequences of in-house background screening by an HR department that may not be up-to-date on current practices. The opportunity for negligent hiring can occur and the cost could be considerable. Failure to follow local, state, and federal regulations for background screening can have a negative impact on a company's bottom line.
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