By Kristen Wakulchuk


With all the busyness – and this year, uncertainty – surrounding the holiday season, it may be tempting to look the other way when it comes to completing background checks on seasonal workers. This would be a mistake that could put a real Grinch in your festivities. 

  • Remember, temporary workers usually have access to your company property and interact with other employees and possibly customers. They may be trained on your systems or work with confidential data. So, it’s critically important to screen them just as you would other team members. 
  • It’s also the law. Regardless of when and for how long you bring seasonal workers on board, most laws and regulations pertinent to permanent employees also apply to them. So, don’t compromise your hiring process in the interest of time. 

Protect your employees, your customers, and your business.

The classification of a person’s employment does not change the need for conducting background screening.  

    • Hiring a known sex offender is a class A misdemeanor. Ensure that any costumed characters or other workers who interact with minors are not on their state or the federal sex offender registry. 
    • Customers tend to more willingly share personal information while preoccupied with shopping and other holiday tasks. It’s your responsibility as an employer to make sure all your workers are both skilled and trustworthy. 

Mitigate risk.

Background screening helps minimize risks, such as employee theft and violence in the workplace. 

    • According to the 32nd annual Retail Theft Survey, 32,941 dishonest employees were apprehended in 2019. More than $45 million was recovered from these arrests, up 7.8 percent from the previous year. 

Don’t jeopardize your business’s safety and integrity by taking a do-it-yourself approach to background screening, even for seasonal hires. Use a professional screening company to ensure the most timely and accurate information under current laws and requirements. 

    • Google searches and social media checks are very valuable in assessing candidates, but they’re not enough for a thorough vetting. You could leave yourself open to legal issues. 

Remember these additional tips, as well: 

    • Communicate with candidates. Notify them before conducting a background check, and allow enough time for them to resolve any disputes around the resulting information. 
    • The same screening laws that protect other applicants also apply to seasonal workers. This means you must obtain a signed authorization and disclosure form before conducting a background check. And if you reject someone based on a check, you must provide pre-adverse and adverse action notices. 
    • Be aware of ban the box laws. Review seasonal employees’ job applications to see if there is a check box regarding their criminal history. If your policy is to ask about this matter on your application or before making a conditional offer, make sure you are not in a state where this practice is banned. 

Partner With the Experts!

Chane Solutions has been a trusted source for employment screening and drug testing since 2006. Our team offers decades of experience, and we work with clients nationwide to provide the fastest, latest, and most accurate reports possible, while helping to maintain 100 percent complianceContact us today to learn more – and have a safe and healthy holiday season. 

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