New Whitepaper Describes Using Individualized Assessments in Criminal Background Screening

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Proforma Screening Solutions, a unit of the Lowers Risk Group, has published a whitepaper that describes a model process for the use of individualized assessments as part of criminal background screening during the hiring process.

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Individualized assessments reduce risk and promote fairness during the hiring process.

Proforma Screening Solutions, a unit of the Lowers Risk Group, has published a new whitepaper that describes how employers can use individualized assessments to make employment decisions based on the results of criminal background checks. Individualized assessments have become increasingly important in response to enforcement guidance issued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

The whitepaper, Individualized Assessments: A Model for Using Criminal Background Checks in the Hiring Process, helps employers understand how anti-discrimination employment law has evolved in recent years to place more emphasis on individual factors in the hiring process.

The key concept these laws operationalize is “disparate impact discrimination,” a form of employment discrimination in which an otherwise neutral criminal history criterion is applied to exclude job applicants with the result being a disproportionate impact on members of an EEOC protected class. The purpose of the individualized assessment is to avoid excluding these applicants based on mitigating factors in their personal backgrounds.

“By definition, individualized assessments vary to measure the circumstances of each person’s criminal history,” explains David Lowers, President of Proforma Screening Solutions. “This reality creates a challenge for employers as they strive to standardize hiring processes, reduce risks, and promote fairness in the hiring process.”

Among a wide variety of factors employers may review in order to confirm or reverse the decision to exclude are the details of the crime, whether the type of crime poses a risk for the specific job at stake, the length of time since the event, and whether the applicant has evidence of rehabilitation. During this entire process, the employer is required to be in communication with the applicant about the criminal background screening and its results, and the applicant must be offered a chance for rebuttal.

The whitepaper is available to download at

About Proforma Screening Solutions

Proforma Screening Solutions is a pioneering firm in the delivery of cost-effective background screening services to help employers make better hiring decisions. The company uses innovative applications of technology, combined with professional expertise, to paint a more complete picture of applicants and employees. Proforma Screening Solutions offers a full range of background screening services, including criminal records checks, verifications, drug screening, and more. As a unit of the Lowers Risk Group, Proforma Screening Solutions also provides direct access to risk mitigation practices to offer clients a single point for total enterprise risk management.

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