A uniform and in-depth background screening process can help prevent workplace violence. Specifically, doing a criminal background check should be seen as a mandatory part of conducting business. Those checks should not only be done on new employees, but also on anyone that comes onto your property. That would include any contractors, vendors, and temporary staff. Even though those people may not be your employees, to promote a higher level of safety, they need to be screened as well.
According to the Bureau for Labor Statistics, nearly 5% of the 7.1 million private businesses experience an incident of workplace violence (Barrett, n.d). Also, the National Center for Victims of Crime reported that 1 of 6 violent crimes experienced by U.S. residents occur at work (Barrett, n.d.). Not only is this distressing to the victims, but it can be detrimental to the employer. When a workplace violence situation happens in the workplace, it can negatively affect productivity and morale, as well as the company’s image and reputation with the public.
prevent workplace violenceEmployers can help protect their employees and their company by processing background checks on new employees, current employees, contractors, vendors, volunteers, and temporary staff. It is also a good idea to annually screen employees, contractors, volunteers, and vendors as things can happen when those people are not at your place of business that could cause issues at some time. And it doesn’t matter if you are a small, medium, or large business, or even a non-profit. All businesses should be doing background checks.
An example of where a violent situation in a small business might have been prevented with a thorough background check is what happened in South Carolina and the Flying Biscuit Café. The store manager was stabbed to death during a robbery of the store. The perpetrator, who was a new employee, was just released from prison a few months before, where he served time for robbery. The entire article, along with other examples, can be read at http://workplaceviolencenews.com/2012/01/30/killing-puts-background-checks-in-spotlight/. Had the employer done a background check, they would have seen the man had a violent past and possibly not hired him.
If you are not sure if your company is doing the right background checks, 3rd Degree Screening, can review your current process and provide recommendations. Our goal is to ensure your company is doing everything they can to protect their employees by processing background checks and coordinating drug testing for you.
Barrett, C. (n.d.). Violence in the Workplace — Strategic Workplace Solutions. Retrieved June 10, 2013, from http://www.strategic-workplace-solutions.com/services/articles/violence-in-the-workplace