‘Tis 2016, a year already pockmarked by soaring temperatures and a dropping currency. Impending fuel and electricity rate hikes are in the wings, ready to make an unwanted appearance on the national stage. In short, getting by in ’16 is going to get a little harder. And when the going gets tough, well, the not-so-tough tend to get resourceful.
CV fraud is a prevalent theme in South Africa, with many individuals falsifying either qualifications or references with the aim of attaining sought-after positions. If you think back a little, you may remember Ellen Thsabalala, a former SABC board chairwoman who claimed to have a BComm and postgraduate degree in labour relations (but didn’t). South African media is riddled with similar stories – indicating not only the greed of some, but the utter desperation of others.
Be that as it may, negligent hiring can have dire consequences for companies – especially when customers or clients are affected as a direct result (think lawsuits likely to be ruled in favour of the ‘injured’ party). So, with qualification fraud rising by 200% from 2009 to 2014, what is it you should do in 2016 to keep risk in check without compromising service or product quality?
Well it depends how risk averse you are. In recent years background screening and verification services have become more accessible to the general public and have as such enjoyed massive uptake. Services such as myScreening eliminate the need for businesses to go through a third party company for all their screening needs. The available checks and verifications have also grown in number and can be done with a very high degree of accuracy and speed.
However it’s a standard approach, not necessarily fulfilling the needs of those who wish to cut back on risk while growing a dependable staff contingent. An increasing number of businesses are opting for a multi-dimensional approach – by not only vetting someone’s past, but by incorporating other screening techniques like pre-employment polygraph testing into the screening mix.
This approach delivers more than a shortlist of candidates with clean track records; businesses are able to employ people whose personalities and habits are in line with company culture and ethos. And this is important, not only because it promotes better integration into an existing team (and therefore the potential for better performance), but also because it weeds out candidates who may me guilty of habitual substance abuse, or who have committed a workplace crime at a previous employer but have never been convicted.
Background checks and pre-employment polygraph testing can be followed with periodic background checks and polygraph testing, which is essential for businesses with staff in positions of trust.
And trust is needed in what appears to be increasingly dire economic times. At the time of this writing, we’re waiting to hear whether interest rates will be pushed up this afternoon. Should this happen, it will be a devastating blow for consumers in an already challenging economic environment. It’s in times like these that desperation grows, pushing many ordinarily law-abiding individuals deep into the murky waters of dishonesty.