Social media screening involves searching public online profiles. Employers use specialized software to conduct searches. They must also be aware of legal concerns.
In a world where social media outrage can quickly damage the reputation of a business, it’s critical to find ways to protect employees and your brand. Employers have terminated employees for various offenses, including posting offensive images, hurling racist or homophobic slurs, and threatening violence. A comprehensive social media screening process can uncover these kinds of activities so that you can avoid hiring or continuing to employ individuals who may be a danger to your team and customers.
A social media screening process should be based on guidelines and standards to ensure it is conducted fairly and consistently. Using a third party specializing in consumer reporting can help lessen the potential for bias and ensure that searches comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and other applicable regulations.
In addition, a social media screening policy can minimize the risk of discrimination based on personal traits such as age, religion, sexual orientation, or political affiliations. A policy that requires applicants to disclose their social media accounts before a hiring decision can prevent this kind of discrimination.
Social media background check is a valuable tool to help prevent the cost of bad hires, protect the brand and reputation of the company, and ensure legal compliance.
People share a lot on their public profiles, which makes them an excellent source of information for hiring managers. Many companies use social media to supplement and complement the information gathered from resumes, applications, and criminal background checks.
Social media screening can search critical platforms to reveal public content that may not appear in a standard background check. A comprehensive background screening process that combines social media screening with reference checks and other methods will help you make the best hires possible while protecting your business from negligent hiring lawsuits.
Social media screening is a powerful tool for preventing fraud, identity theft, and security issues. It can also help companies ensure that they are hiring and retaining the best employees possible to protect the reputation of their brands and keep their workplaces safe.
Many employers hire outside background screening companies to conduct social media searches for candidates. It is essential to ensure that the agency has a policy that clearly outlines what can and cannot be screened, including protected class information.
Additionally, it is essential to train all managers running these checks on what they can and cannot consider when making decisions about hiring. Everyone has unconscious biases, and it can be easy to overlook information that may seem harmless or innocuous.
A quality social media screening tool should focus on only business-related information and redact any protected class information. In addition, it should not use scraping or other illegal or unethical methods to obtain this data. This can lead to legal complications.
Suppose a school employee’s social media profiles reveal unprofessional or inappropriate content that would negatively affect the school. In that case, it can disrupt the educational environment and potentially put students at risk. Conducting social media screenings allows schools to protect their reputation and mitigate any potential safety risks in the workplace.
In addition, social media screening can be an essential tool for ensuring that a school or business maintains legal and ethical compliance. It can identify any offensive or discriminatory content that violates policies and guidelines set by a company.
However, implementing social media screenings in the hiring process is challenging. Working with a third party that can provide compliant, objective, and unbiased data when searching for content on candidates’ social media profiles is essential. Companies specializing in social media screening have the systems and expertise to ensure all information is valid, comply with FCRA consumer reporting requirements, and meet state-specific laws. This protects businesses from negligent hiring lawsuits by providing a consistent and fair hiring process.
Ensure Legal Compliance
While it’s not illegal to search social media, doing so improperly can lead to legal risks. It’s essential to follow all federal and state laws regarding social media screening, including EEOC, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and other employment and privacy regulations.
Employers must ensure that they do not discriminate against candidates based on factors unrelated to the job, such as race, religion, sexual orientation, or national origin. Also, employers must avoid asking for passwords to private social media accounts, as this is illegal in many states and carries significant legal risks.
Using social media screening helps prevent lawsuits from tarnishing your business’ reputation. For example, if you were to hire someone who was a registered sex offender, your company could be sued for negligent hiring. Running a standard background check on all new hires and continuously monitoring current employees ensures you are not exposing your company to lawsuits. A professional social media screening firm has experience handling these issues and can help you stay compliant. They can also help you develop a clear policy and ensure all new hires know what to expect during the screening process.