We discuss the challenges of screening around the globe with the Chairman of the NAPBS Global Advisory Council, Vivek Khanna.
The National Association of Professional Background Screeners is dedicated to promoting ethical and compliant business practices- not just in the United States- but around the globe.
The organization’s APAC Chapter is dedicated to bringing the same high standards we expect here at home to the Asia Pacific region, which includes more than 30 nations such as China, Australia, Japan, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and many more.
Former APAC Chair and current Chairman of the NAPBS Global Advisory Counci Vivek Khanna says the goal of the chapter is to increase the penetration of employment screening in those countries domestically- at the local level… teaching employers and governments how pre-employment screening can help THEM- not just American companies and big multi-national interests doing business on their soil.
During a recent interview, Khanna told me it is illegal to do any type of criminal check in so many of these nations, but he also stresses that criminal checks are not the only powerful resource available.
"In most of those countries the infrastructure as of now is not really developed enough from the criminal side, but employment screening is not just about the criminal check, and that is something that is a mistaken part in the US. Because in the US most people think “employment screening”- criminal check. Employment screening is about ensuring that the candidate that you are hiring, number one, is safe, is ethical- right? And does not lie. And how do you check that they do not lie is that you check what they have presented to you, either in form of their financial strength, or in terms of their education, or their academics. So in these countries, the education check and the academic check and the reference check become far more important. And you get a lot more hits because a lot of people in these countries WILL fudge their resume. So employment screening has a much broader perspective when it goes to the international market."In many of these countries NAPBS standards would require a full-blown paradigm shift… so are they receptive?
"YES! Increasingly. It has been primarily driven by the American companies because of their contracts saying if you want to do work for us you have to insure that. The financial houses whether it’s insurance, banks, mutual funds, investment funds, they’ve always been doing the checks because it was financially prudent to make sure you didn’t get somebody who would embezzle funds. But now, increasingly, more and more companies are seeing it as a strong talent policy that you do take people through a screening system. And that’s what- my role today is, to get the membership riled up about education and reaching out there."But even with all of the effort, it is still a challenge for American CRAs trying to do business in the APAC region.
"I think that’s where NAPBS stands out. All of our members- the service members who are in these countries and are CRAs in the US have a very strong partnership, and we make that process for these companies extremely smooth, just the way the industry has matured here in the US. It’s still in its infancy in the international markets, but it’s quickly coming up the maturity curve. The best practices, so for example, most companies in India will be ISO 9001, currently we are working on a credentialing program for the international companies so that the employers will get the confidence that they are attracting the right person. And in any case, if they are working with NAPBS members, that’s the biggest confidence that they get, that they will get a smooth service."