Category Archives: Job Descriptions

HR Thursday: Reference & Background Checks

REFERENCE AND BACKGROUND CHECKS

Watch this video!

Most difficulties after hiring result from an employer not checking references and/or backgrounds

“The single most important indicator of how an employee will perform in the future appears to be how he/she has performed in the past.  Employees with a history of success tend to continue their successful performance.  The others, despite their best intentions, rarely are able to turn over a new leaf.”  Arthur A. Witkin, Chief Psychologist, Personnel Sciences Center, New York, NY


Why Check References and Backgrounds?

  • To screen out unsuitable candidates
  • To weed out potentially dangerous or violent employees
  • To avoid costly hiring mistakes

Some staggering statistics:

  • 45% of resumes contain false or exaggerated information
  • 52% of applicants exaggerate their experience
  • Approximately 10-15 workplace homicides occur every week
  • Approximately 1 million people are attacked at work each year
  • 1 in 3 employees steal

Claims of NEGLIGENT HIRING arises when any of the following occurs:

  • The employer hires an unfit employee who injures or is a risk to others
  • The employer fails to conduct a thorough background check
  • The employer fails to recognize and reject an applicant who may be a potential risk

The difference between a “Background Check” and a “Reference Check”


A key issue for employers is what constitutes a “background check” and what constitutes a “reference check.” This is important because the disclosure requirements differ.


Background checks
involve matters of public record. “Public record” means documentation of a conviction, civil judicial action, tax lien, or outstanding judgment. This category also includes an individual’s credit worthiness, credit standing or capacity, character, general reputation, personal characteristics, or mode of living which is used or expected to be used or collected in whole or in part for the purpose of serving as a factor in establishing the individual’s eligibility for employment.


Reference checks
involve the prospective employer verifying an applicant’s employment dates, job title, last salary, and job performance with a previous employer. Results from this type of investigation do not need to be disclosed to a prospective employee.

All this information has been supplied by Bent Ericksen & Associates. To find out how to do legal and proper background and/or reference checks please contact them.

HR Thursday: Job Descriptions and Protecting your Investment

Watch this Video about JOB DESCRIPTIONS

Employers are required to comply with a long and ever growing list of employment laws and regulations:

  • The Americans with Disabilities Act
  • State Worker’s Compensation laws
  • Occupational Safety and Health Act

Not only do these regulations focus on what people do, i.e. the essential job duties, but also on how they do it (physical demands and work environment).


If an employee or a government agency challenges a hiring or employment decision, one of the most important documents you will be expected to provide is a copy of the job description.

A job Description:

  • Can prevent wrongful discharge lawsuits
  • Can prevent charges of discrimination from an applicant that you didn’t hire
  • Serves as a basis for performance reviews

A written job description for every position will also provide guidance when you are advertising for a new employee.  Properly worded and based on the job description, your recruiting activities will be far more successful at weeding out those applicants that are less qualified, which will save you time and money.  And it starts a new employee out with accurate expectations, keeping you from greater (and very expensive) turnover.


I’m happy to send you a job description for 1 or 2 positions in your healthcare practice.  Comment below…

Good luck navigating your fishbowl this week—I’ll see you soon for another Human Resources Thursday!