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Temporary Tammy Needs a Seasonal Background Check

November 15, 2018


November 15, 2018

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Everyone is doing more during the holiday season. More cooking, more eating, more shopping, more driving to grandma’s and for some people; more hiring. According to an article this fall by “UPS (United Parcel Service) would hire about 100,000 temporary employees for the crucial holiday season beginning in November.” Now most business will not be adding temporary headcounts into the six figures this season, but there is no question that there is a surge of hiring before and during the holiday season.

This wave of hiring can be a headache for companies when deciding what minimum requirements they will expect of their temporary employees. You may be able to hire someone who doesn’t have the right amount of experience you are looking for in a full-time employee and give them a shorter responsibility list. You may be able to hire someone with a less flexible schedule who can only work Saturdays and Tuesdays. But one thing you may not be able to be flexible on is the background check. Some employers may decide to forgo this check in an attempt to save time and money. In the end though, does it really? Here are a few reasons you may want to rethink saying pass on completing a background check for Temporary Tammy.

Safe Environment

For the safety of yourself, your employees and your customers, a background check is an easy decision. You are requiring a minimum background of all other employees, why not temporary ones? Sure, they may not be entrusted with your company credit card or your office key but there are still many opportunities for things to go awry. Did they have prior conviction for a violent offense? It is your responsibility as an employer to provide a safe working environment. Not just for your employees but also your customers. A simple background check can save you not just the headache of a potential lawsuit, but the distrust of your current employees.

Company Image

You and your employees have worked hard to create an image and brand of your company. This reason is two folds really. First you want to make sure that the temporary employee can represent the face of your company. In the retail world with so much online shopping happening these days, some consumers hardly ever walk into a store anymore unless it is the holiday season. Do you want the one time a year your customer visits your brick and mortar to get the wrong impression of what your company is about? Second, do you want the word to spread that “Company ABC” doesn’t do background checks?

Employee Theft and Fraud

What are some of the reasons you are asking your full-time employees to complete a background check? One may be to see their trustworthiness. You most likely wouldn’t hire a bartender who was convicted of fraud at her last employer for pocketing $5 every other time she made a whiskey sour. And you probably wouldn’t hire an employee with a theft conviction at a retail outlet either. Why take the risk?

$ 0

According to the 2017 National Retail Security Survey conducted by the National Retail Federation, in 2016 one dishonest employee in the apparel industry had an average loss of $1,132 for a company.

That is just one employee. Imagine if you were hiring a few hundred temporary employees and didn’t know their background.

Don’t Assume

Mass or bulk hiring can be very stressful on your team. One way to help with this is to use a temporary recruiting service. They can screen, interview and complete background checks for you. They’ll even handle your payroll and just send you the bill if you’d like. This is a great way to cut down on the stress, but make sure your team is aligned on a few things with your recruiting company first.

For example; Who are they using for background checks? Are they even using a background check company or just taking the employee’s word for it? Are they checking not just national records but with the state and county as well? It is important when using a recruiting company that you are not just assuming to be on the same page with them but confirming. Ask to see that background check before saying yes to an employee.


Every level of employee may have a different hiring process. This just makes sense. Maybe you have a phone screen and in person interview for hourly employees, but for salaried roles you do reference checks as well?

When it comes to the basics of background checks though, requirements are usually standard across the board. Why make different steps and processes for different hires if you don’t have to. Standardization can save some time. For instance; temporary employees don’t get background checks, full-time hourly employees get background checks with drug screens, salaried employees just get background checks without drug screens and executive levels get background checks including credit and employment checks. Sounds like a lot to keep track of.

Why not just keep it all the same and simple?

Let’s Be Fair

Maybe not the highest on your list of reasons to do a background check, but wouldn’t an employee of yours be frustrated if a temporary employee was not held to the same standards as them? It can be belittling to an employee to know that their company will “just hire anyone” to do the same role they take so much pride in.

Hiring After Season

What if Short Term Steve was so fantastic during the holiday season, you want to hire him for the first opening you have available after the ball drops into the new year? Isn’t that the great thing about the temporary hiring season? It is a trial run on full time employees! But what if you go through all the proper steps to make Short Term Steve a full-time employee and you find out that he has a few convictions and is actually Stealing Steve? Not only is it a bummer to lose him but you’ve spent valuable training hours and dollars on someone you thought was going to work out when all this time you could have known from the start.

Background checks on temporary employees can save a lot of headaches and time in the end for employers. Have anything to add to the discussion? Comment below. Need more info on getting those background checks off your hiring to do list? You can reach out to Crimcheck, a NAPBS Accredited, NMSDC certified and a newly ranked Inc. 500 company.

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