At the midpoint of 2014, there have been over 100 lawsuits that have been brought against companies by the EEOC. Most of the lawsuits center around some type of discrimination (disability, sexual harassment, pregnancy, refusing to hire due to a handicap, race), however, there have been several that have involved retaliation by employers against employees.
These types of issue present nothing new, but they bring to light that many companies are still not ensuring that safeguards are in place. Understanding local, state and national laws is one thing that will keep you out of hot water. Hiring the right people to see these things through is a bigger piece of the puzzle. Employment screenings are not the complete answer, but it will help an employer gain a picture about whether a person will be up to the task of meeting employment challenges.
Let’s be honest…a workplace is not always a harmonious environment. Personality clashes, disagreements with management and problems with a company’s policies are always going to occur. It’s the way in which things are handled that more often than not bring about the type of lawsuits mentioned above. Employment screenings can provide a snapshot of how a person has performed in his or her previous employment. They can tell you if they will be a team player, follow policy, and whether or not their style fits the company. When it comes time for promotions, an employer wants to know that the people they put into management positions will carry forward the culture that has been created. Employment challenges arise when the culture begins to go awry, or things are not handled as they should be.
When you consider all of the lawsuits so far in 2014, it’s evident that companies, both large and small, need to look at things such as their culture and the employment decisions that have been made and how those affect the decisions on the job. Employment screenings certainly help identify qualified candidates that can help a company stay away from the challenges that can plague a workplace. The EEOC is always looking for avenues to protect employee’s rights. If the right people are hired, backgrounds are checked and the management trained correctly, some of the problems can be avoided. Obviously, nothing is 100% and anytime a hire is made there is a bit of a gamble taken that you are indeed hiring the right person for the job. Through employment screenings, proper training, policy updating and employee development, companies can steer clear of lawsuits and have workplaces that function at a high level all the time.