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#MeeToo: Cos getting external hands to vet background checks for mgmt brass

Monday, November 05, 2018

With the #MeToo movement gaining momentum across the country, experts feel companies need to widen background screening, including social media checks, while hiring employees at higher levels.

Posts on social media platforms can indicate the behaviour and personality of a prospective candidate, they said. "Social media has a large role to play in today's hiring. Posts on social platforms can indicate the behaviour and personality of a prospective candidate.

"Not just the angry rants, but also who they follow, what they read, and where they vacation, can say a lot of things about a candidate," TeamLease Services senior vice- president Neeti Sharma told PTI. According to her, other means that companies can use to avoid hiring such "bad" candidates is doing a mapping or even meet them upfront. For instance, globally, many companies map and meet senior or mid-level candidates socially to identify their personality traits.

"Social tests conducted by some companies globally go beyond the background verification with the HR or their reporting managers. "Receptionists, cab drivers, security guards, and women colleagues among others are also contacted to informally verify the potential candidate," she adds.

Most multinationals, large corporates and publicly traded companies in the country are aware of the consequences of such incidents and make it a priority for them. "However, many companies from the SME/MSME/and informal segments need to focus on prevention of sexual harassment at workplace as well as make their employees aware of the POSH (prevention of sexual harassment) Act. "Another segment that needs to build this in right earnest are the startups," she said. "The startups in the beginning have a few hands but when they grow up it will become imperative for them to start paying attention to ensure safety and security of its female employees at theworkplace," she says.

Echoing a similar view, Rahul Belwalkar, CEO of Secur Credentials,which is into employee background checks, says besides reports from the previous workplaces, a complete background check includes checking the targets address, educational qualifications, social media backgrounds, credit history, court and criminal records, apart from making him/her undergo a psychometric and drug tests.

"These are the industry best practices which help identify the correct fit for companies and weed out the undesirables.

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