Blog September 18, 2019

3 keys to comprehensive pre-employment screening

By Chris Vroman

The people you hire to operate, manage, and work for your multifamily property business are equally as important as those you choose as residents for your properties. Having the right pre-employment screening process means utilizing a service that enables you to hire as quickly as possible, validate all licenses or degrees, and adapt the criteria for different roles.

In order to get the most out of your pre-employment screening service, you’ve got to make sure that you choose a provider that meets the needs of your multifamily business, offers a quality screening service, and complies with state and federal regulations.

1) Choosing the right employment screening provider

When you choose a pre-employment screening vendor, you’re not just buying a product; you’re choosing to trust someone with one of the most foundational aspects of your business.

Many aspects of the new hire process rely on communication, and as a multifamily property manager, there will be times when you need to fast-track the hiring process. Maybe you’ll need to fill an unexpected vacant position, or perhaps you need to get someone hired before a seasonal influx of move-ins/move-outs. For these reasons, it’s important to have several different lines of communication between you and your employment screening provider.

Of course, none of the many channels of communication will do any good if your screening provider doesn’t offer timely or thorough responses to your inquiries. When the speed of your new hire process relies on a third party, you’ve got to be sure your provider responds quickly, and that they set aside ample to answer any questions you may have.

Depending on the position you’re looking to hire, you will likely need access to different sets of criteria for different job roles. For example, perhaps you’re looking for applicants that will be working with your organization’s financials, and you need to see which candidates have the proper training and certifications. When you’re choosing a screening tool, you should ask questions like, “Do they offer all of the different background checks we need?” and “Can we screen for the right standards on a case-by-case basis?”

2) Using a thorough screening service

The reason employment screening is so foundational to your organization is because it lays the groundwork for good business interactions, both internally and externally. Using the proper screening service enables you to improve the quality of your hires, protect your company’s reputation, and reduce the risk of legal or criminal exposure. In short, your employment screening service should be serving the same ultimate purpose of minimizing risk that your resident screening does.

Any discussion around a pre-employment screening service would be incomplete without of course mentioning the primary goal of said screening: improving the quality of new hires. One new employee can act as a morale boost among your current employees, especially if this hire has the skills and abilities to do the job well. A bad hire can have an impact on company culture and the overall reputation of your organization.

Making the right hire also helps to protect the reputation of your multifamily property. In the same way that flaws in your resident screening can be felt throughout the organization’s back office, flaws in your employment screening can cause problems that reverberate into the resident experience. The right hire can help keep your operations moving at an efficient pace.

Finally, utilizing the best employment screening service means running the proper criminal background checks. This aspect might seem fairly straightforward to the untrained eye, but as property managers know from their resident screening experiences, background checks can be a legal minefield. The same applies for your pre-employment screening service. Running new hires through the right background checks doesn’t mean rejecting applicants with a criminal history – you’ve got to remain in compliance with local and federal laws.

3) Complying with state and federal laws

The screening service you choose needs to be in compliance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). Enacted in 1970, the FCRA was aimed at protecting the rights of applicants and new hires. This law determines what personal information can be considered in a background check, and it allows applicants to review that information and contest any details they feel are inaccurate.

When it comes to background checks, there are steps that you as the property manager can take in order to remain compliant. By using all of the proper forms, keeping your applicants adequately updated, and allowing applicants to review their own data, you can ensure that your organization keeps up with the background check process in a fair and legal manner.

Like your resident screening, your pre-employment screening can have a vast impact on every part of your business, so it’s important to use a service and provider that works for you. MRI Software offers both resident screening and pre-employment screening, making the onboarding process as easy as your lead-to-lease operations. Learn more about our pre-employment screening service in this webinar.

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