Bringing Employees Back to Work

New screening strategies can help boost hiring speed and employee safety

It’s been a wild ride so far—2020, that is—and we’re barely halfway through the year. At First Advantage, we’ve been on this rollercoaster with you, doing everything we can to help you navigate through these unprecedented times. Here are a few market insights, tools and strategies we’ve compiled while on this journey to help businesses better understand hiring trends, quickly bring employees back to work and resume safe, productive business operations.

Market Overview: The Highs and Lows

Across our thousands of customers spanning nearly every industry and country, we’ve seen hiring soar in some sectors and bottom out in others in recent months. Here’s a peek at some of the activity we’ve seen from March through May.

SOURCE: First Advantage

Businesses are Reopening and Rethinking their Workforce

With roughly 20 million Americans unemployed as of mid-June 2020,1 many businesses are reopening and cautiously moving forward with hiring, with aggressive hiring expected to ramp up in July and August across most industries. As hiring restarts, many companies are rethinking their workforce.

  • Remote workers are increasing. A recent Gartner CFO survey shows that nearly 75 percent of respondents plan to permanently transition at least 20 percent of their onsite employees to remote positions.2 Another analysis shows that nearly half of employees, 48 percent, will likely telecommuteat least part of the time moving forward, up from 30 percent prior to the pandemic.3
  • Freelancers and contractors are replacing full-time employees. Additional Gartner analysis revealed that 32 percent of organizations are replacing full-time employees with contingent workers as a cost-saving measure.4
  • Attracting and hiring new employees has been difficult. In a recent LinkedIn survey of talent acquisition professionals, 62 percent of respondents said the pandemic has hurt their company’s ability to hire according to plan, 54 percent believe their company will make fewer offers and 46 percent said it has hurt the candidate experience at their company. 5

Despite these shifting mindsets and difficulties, in nearly all cases employers are asking one key question: How do we keep candidates, employees and contractors safe and productive across our business amid an evolving global pandemic? At First Advantage, we’ve been asking the same questions. Here’s how we’re moving forward.

The Future of Work is Changing

At this point, a few things are clear. Telecommuting is central to the new normal. On-demand hiring is in demand. Employee health and safety are mission critical. As a global employer with more than 4,300 employees on the ground in 26 locations around the world, we get it—work is changing. That’s why we’re investing in a new generation of background screening solutions powered by virtual and mobile technologies, automation and more, to help businesses like yours and ours better navigate the new world of work.

  • Rehire and onboard essential staff in hours. Whether you’re bringing back furloughed workers, hiring new employees, integrating freelance and contractor workers or re-staffing a nonprofit with volunteers, you need to get up and running fast. Solutions are available that enable businesses to:
    • Quickly upload lists of names for “all at once” background check action, so you can clear many candidates for work in hours.
    • Continuously monitor existing employees for new criminal record activity so you can safely return them to the workplace, faster.
    • Screen and digitally badge contractors with remote, candidate-powered workflows that demonstrate near-instant work readiness.
  • Better support remote workers. Telecommuting can be rough at first. Mobile-enabled apps are available to help employees better transition to working from home with easy self-assessments that identify the equipment and privacy measures needed to promote a secure, productive remote workspace.
  • Instantly evaluate workforce wellness via employee self-assessments. Before anyone steps foot in the office, it’s important to know if they’re feeling ill or experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms. Mobile-enabled, self-assessment tools are now available that allow employees to assess and self-report to employers remotely, in seconds, using their smartphone or tablet.
  • Put employees back to work faster while keeping them safe with virtual drug screening. Instead of sending candidates and employees to collection sites for drug testing, virtual kits are available now that enable workers to perform a non-invasive oral drug screenings via video chat, with instant results.

Still other solutions are available to help businesses maximize their employee retention tax credits from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), but these tools are only the beginning. As your dedicated background screening partner, we are committed to delivering forward-thinking insights, tools and solutions that keep the workplace safe. Contact us today to learn more about the many ways we’re helping companies quickly and securely get back to business.


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