As we watch another year come to an end, we truly hope that our viewers have found the Screening News Network videos helpful, educational and even entertaining. Next month we will hear President Obama’s final State of the Union Address and we thought it would be a good time for a look at the State of the Background Screening Industry.
2015 Year In Review
The industry itself is strong and continues to grow. The top concerns of HR professionals continue to be accuracy, service, compliance, security, workflow optimization and the candidate experience. Other hot issues are the nationwide push to ban the box, continued litigation centered on disclosure and authorization forms, accuracy, adverse action, legalized marijuana, and e-chains for DOT drug testing. We cover all of these hot topics on the Screening News Network at www.ebi.com.
Consent Forms and Adverse Action
Compliance related litigation involving the proper use of consent forms and adverse action under the FCRA seemed to reach a fevered pitch in the last half of the year and shows every sign of continuing into 2016. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau upped the pressure on Consumer Reporting Agencies in an effort to ensure background reports are accurate, especially for those applicants with common names.
Technology and Applicant Tracking Systems
Technology in the industry continues to make strides. Onboarding technologies are making things easier for applicants and HR departments as they go beyond the Applicant Tracking Systems to address client’s very individualized needs. Technology is also making strides in the drug testing side of the industry. We saw a big example of this when the new transportation bill finally allowed DOT regulated employers to utilize Electronic Chain of Custody Forms for their drug testing programs.
Award-Winning Year for EBI
From EBI’s point of view, it has been a great year. We continue to grow and capped 2015 off by being named to two great lists of Top Background Screeners… Workforce Magazine’s Hot List and HRO Today’s Baker’s Dozen. EBI has been fortunate enough to be listed on both of these lists for nearly a decade. Both are wonderful resources for companies looking for help with their screening needs… but this year the fun doesn’t come without some controversy.
The day after the Baker’s Dozen List was announced, HRO Today’s CEO posted a raging attack against three background screening providers for “opting out” of the annual customer satisfaction survey, and went so far as to tell potential buyers to boycott the three for what he calls “rank hypocrisy.” Elliot H. Clark went on to say the three companies denied their customers the chance to voice their opinions on the service they were receiving. Clark named names… we will not.
Mergers and Acquisitions
This year was also marked by some huge mergers and acquisitions. Private equity firms acquired a majority share of Sterling BackCheck. Then in November, Sterling acquired EmployeeScreenIQ. Accurate Background acquired Hirease, DISA acquired Prime Information Center and Patriot National Incorporated acquired Global HR Research. There are some rumors about a few more big mergers; we’ll see what happens in the New Year.