A recent survey, conducted by Sterling Talent Solutions, has revealed that 40% of employers have admitted to failing to conduct proper screening of international hires, despite 78% of respondents noting that they had carried out the necessary checks on domestic employees.
Although some checks are optional some employers are failing to undertake the ‘right to work’ checks which ascertain is a person has the legal right to work in the UK, whether this is via work visa or as a citizen of the country.
What are pre-employment checks
The pre-employment screening can include a range of checks, which is often used to verify the accuracy of the applicant’s claims in line with their application. Further pre-employment checks include checking the individuals criminal history, employer sanctions and performing the necessary ‘right to work’ checks.
Criminal record checks, formerly CRB, are often more prevalent in businesses which include dealing with vulnerable people and typically occurring in the healthcare and education sector as standard. Other employers as part of their international talent advisory strategy, may choose to undertake these checks, particularly if the employee is going to be handling sensitive data, have access to funds and other private information.
Identity and financial checks can be carried out by any employer and seek to uncover up to date information on would-be employees to ensure authentication of identity. The banking and medical sector often conduct these as standard and can minimise the risks to any business, particularly where sensitive information is part of the job role.
Finally, validation and reference checks allow prospective employers to understand any potential risks that an employee may pose to a company and confirm the claims made by the applicant based on their previous occupational history, education and professional membership.
What are the repercussions of failing to do this
Failure to implement pre-employment screening checks can pose a huge threat to a business. Although many of the checks listed are not essential during an international talent search, they are always advised as they can reduce the risk of hiring a person who could potentially take or use information or resources for uses beyond their job description. Moreover, individuals with particular marks on their records are not able to work in particular industries due to the risk they most pose.
The ‘Right To Work’ check is mandatory for any business operating in the UK. Companys must check that an applicant has the right to work in the UK ahead of offering them a contract of employment. In order to employ anyone, an employer must see the applicants original documents, check that the documents are valid in the presence of the applicant and ensure that they keep copies of the documents including dates that they were checked. These documents should be kept for 2 years after the employee ceases to work for the business.
International applicants must also prove that they have the correct documentation that allows them to work in the UK, legally. Checks include checking the passport original checking to see if the worker has a certification of registration or naturalisation as a British citizen and checking the nationality of the applicant.