If you’re a business owner or an HR manager you are probably well aware of the present social context and the emphasis placed on creating a safe workplace. It is your duty to make sure that there is no room for harassment and discrimination in your company.
On the other hand, you need to consider the economic implications of making a bad hire.
In this article, we will examine what tools you can use to create a modern workplace in keeping with 21st century values.
Pre-employment screening is essential to keep your employees safe
If you want to be successful you don’t want your company involved in any scandal. This is the era of the #MeToo movement and the era of social justice, and the Australian public will react badly if your business is accused of sexual discrimination, sexual harassment or racial discrimination.
The first step is to create modern anti-discrimination policy for your company. This won’t be of much help if the people you hire commit such crimes. Take, for instance, the case of a supervisor that harasses female employees. As an employer you are not directly responsible for their behavior, but you can still be held accountable for making the decision to hire that person.
If it is discovered that you acted carelessly when hiring that person, you will be found guilty by the public opinion if not by a court of law. And these days public opinion is even more powerful than the law. A general boycott of your products or services organised on social media can drive your company into bankruptcy.
To avoid that you should use strict pre-employment screening methods.
Pre-employment screening must include background checks
One of the best tools HR managers should use is a background check on any new employee. This way you can find out if the person you’re looking to hire has ever committed a sexual offence or was convicted of a hate crime.
Since we’re talking about modern 21st century businesses, you should use the most modern type of background checks, that is online background checks. In countries like Australia, employers can choose service providers specializing in criminal history checks. These government approved services provide valid criminal history checks so you’ll know if a certain candidate has ever committed a crime that would make them unsuitable for a position within your organisation.
The importance of social media checks
A background check can tell you what a person did in the past, but social media accounts allow you to find out what sort of ideas they harbor.
For a 21st century, HR manager checking the social media profiles of a candidate is a must. Have a look at what that person posts about and what sort of messages they share. It’s fairly easy to spot someone who is sexist or racist if you look at their Facebook or Twitter posts. Also, have a look at the types of shows they like and, most of all, what organizations they belong to.
If you’re satisfied that a candidate doesn’t seem to be holding sexist or racist views, and their police check comes back clean, you can go ahead and hire that person.
However, the first thing you must do after you hire them is have them read your anti-discrimination policy.