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Ryan Howard

Vice President, Business Development at VeriFirst, a BYL Company
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Recent Posts

Do You Need an Electronic Drug Screening Process?

Posted by Ryan Howard on Sun, Dec 23, 2018

The drug testing process can be a mandatory hassle for human resource professionals. Between screening new hires and implementing randomized testing for current employees, the paperwork and lag time between testing and results can become a real issue. Is there a way to make drug screening easier for employers?

Does your human resources department need an electronic drug screening process?

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Topics: Types of Background Checks

Running Background Checks on Current Employees

Posted by Ryan Howard on Sat, Dec 22, 2018

Running a background check on new hires is a common HR practice. Applicants recognize that their criminal backgrounds, credit history, driving records and professional experience (among other things) could possibly be a deterrent to a job offer. Employees currently working for an organization, however, may not expect a background check from their employer. While not a common practice across all industries, we are asked the question with some regularity and thought we should address it.

Should an employer consider running background checks on current employees?

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Topics: Employment Background Screening

Free Sample Background Check Policy

Posted by Ryan Howard on Fri, Dec 21, 2018

Federal and state regulations are changing with practically every class action lawsuit and it can be a challenge to stay abreast of the latest information. In order to take the education even further, we've done some of the work for you, providing free sample templates and other forms that can be used to help with background screening practices. One more template is now available - a free sample background check policy.

Read more to learn why your business may need a background check policy.

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Topics: Employment Background Screening, Hiring and Recruiting

Employer Petco Hit with FCRA Class Action Settlement for Improper Adverse Action

Posted by Ryan Howard on Mon, Dec 17, 2018

In November 2018, national retailer of pet supplies, Petco, was ordered to pay 1.2 Million dollars in a California Employment Background Screening Class Action Settlement. The case was brought against the company in 2016 when two applicants found that the employer "obtained and reviewed consumer reports" about their financial history without first obtaining consent. One applicant was hired but the other was denied employment due to adverse information on her background check report. She was not notified properly so she could dispute any inaccurate information.

With the number of Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) lawsuits against employers, it's obvious that job applicants are more aware of their applicant rights than ever before. Is your screening provider giving you guidance on FCRA compliance so your organization is protected against litigation for improper adverse action?

Let's look at the case against Petco.

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Topics: FCRA Compliance, Employment Background Screening

Should Your Company Have a Holiday Party?

Posted by Ryan Howard on Fri, Dec 07, 2018

The #MeToo movement may be affecting the annual company holiday party tradition, according to a recent study quoted on HRDive. Even though consumer and corporate confidence in the economy is higher than last year, the amount of companies planning to host a holiday party is as low as it was in 2009. The reason? Alcohol, the potential for inappropriate behavior and the liability of the HR department and the company throwing the shindig. While 57% of employees have seen their co-workers drunk, many businesses are considering a way to make the annual gathering less...wild.

Should your company have a holiday party? Let's offer some ideas to avoid bad behavior.

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Topics: Human Resources, Employee Relationship Management, Employment Background Screening

What Employers Need to Know About Background Checks

Posted by Ryan Howard on Mon, Dec 03, 2018

Whether it's your first hire or your thousandth, employers should have very clear and thorough knowledge of background checks. Pre-employment background checks are highly recommended to reduce turnover, minimize risk of negligent hiring and legal costs. At a minimum, employers should be verifying previous employment, education, criminal records, and credentials. 

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has recommendations for screening candidates that employers must also follow so they won't be responsible for punitive damages if the candidate decides to file a claim. Employers should also know what screens to ask for, how to get a faster turnaround and at a fair cost.

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Topics: Employment Background Screening, FCRA Compliance

How to Select a Background Check Package for New Hires

Posted by Ryan Howard on Mon, Nov 19, 2018

When hiring a new employee, it may be tempting to run every background check available. This is a bad idea for two reasons - (1) running unneeded background checks will take longer and (2) they'll cost more too.

Instead of checking the box on every background check, consider certain background checks may only be needed for certain types of jobs. Understanding the types of background checks, and what information they reveal, can also be helpful to determine which background checks best fit the situation.

How to select a background check package for new hires

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Topics: Types of Background Checks, Employment Background Screening, Hiring and Recruiting

HR Policy for Criminal Background Checks

Posted by Ryan Howard on Fri, Nov 09, 2018

Creating a background check policy allows your human resources department to be consistent during the hiring, promotion and terminations processes. Employers must be mindful of applicant rights when applying a background check policy and any local, state or federal employment laws applicable in your area.  Attempting to remember screening procedures as well as compliance rules can be challenging, especially if hiring is done sporadically or not as often. A screening policy is a dependable, company-wide policy that helps to create a positive experience for hiring managers and employees.

Here are the most important steps to creating an HR policy for criminal background checks.

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Topics: Human Resources, Hiring and Recruiting, Employment Background Screening

What Employers Should Consider When Hiring for the Seasonal Holidays

Posted by Ryan Howard on Fri, Nov 02, 2018

It's that magical time of year when retailers across the nation are looking for seasonal employees to take them through the holidays. With a great economy in full swing, stores are looking to hire over a half a million workers, just in time for Black Friday. Seasonal hiring may be different this year, thanks to the great economy, because the unemployment is the lowest it's been since 1969.

Here's what employers should consider when seasonal hiring this year.

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Topics: Hiring and Recruiting

Introducing: Business Search and Corporate Screening

Posted by Ryan Howard on Fri, Oct 26, 2018

With many thanks to our subscribers and clients, we're excited to bring you the latest company news. In addition to VeriFirst's continuing services of employment and hiring background checks, tenant screening, and customer ID verification, we are expanding to include business and corporate screening services.

VeriFirst Background Screening is one of four companies under the umbrella of BYL Companies. Each of these sister companies has their own specialty and yet work together to provide outsourced back office operations to our clients. Expanding our service offerings to include corporate screening was a natural development of our current client relationships and requests.

Read to learn more about corporate screening services and why you may need it.

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Topics: VeriFirst Insider, Customer Identity Verification, Types of Background Checks