Based on the EMEA findings from last year’s survey, there are three key areas we will be exploring further in our 2022 survey to identify if and how things have changed in the last 12 months. With that in mind, we would like your thoughts on the following topics.
Global candidate discrepancy rates were down last year, although inconsistencies were still found by most businesses.
A candidate discrepancy is where information provided by a job candidate does not match what is found during their background check.
This could be due to a candidate unknowingly providing incorrect information, such as misremembering the dates of their previous employment or it could be intentional CV fraud, where a candidate has deliberately fabricated details to mislead a potential employer into making an ill-informed hiring decision.
In our 2021 survey, the types of checks most often resulting in discrepancies were employment and education verifications, with 53% of EMEA employers stating that they had uncovered discrepancies in their candidates’ employment details, and 47% stating they had found discrepancies when verifying their candidates’ education credentials.
This was consistent with the types of checks most often resulting in discrepancies in the region in 2020, however, there were notably fewer employers reporting discrepancies in candidates’ employment and education information in 2021 than in 2020.
The 2021 survey also found that fewer EMEA businesses were conducting employment and education verification checks than in 2020, which could be a contributing factor to the lower discrepancy rates.
With unemployment rates in 2022 stabilising and hiring back on the rise, will an increase in the volume of candidates being screened correlate to the discovery of more candidate discrepancies? Have the economic pressures of the last two years led to more candidates misrepresenting their experience or credentials to stay ahead of the pack?
On the other hand, with businesses looking to hire as quickly as possible, are some employers omitting certain background checks at the risk of potentially hiring candidates based on misrepresentations on their CVs? If so, while reported candidate discrepancy rates may stay lower than previous years, they may not reflect the full picture if candidates’ details are going unchecked.
Businesses adapting their screening programmes
With increased recruitment volumes and many employers hiring and onboarding more new workers virtually, organisations’ background screening requirements may have changed.
Many employers have been recruiting candidates, both locally and internationally, without ever meeting them in person.
However, while they may be reaping the benefits of a global talent pool, employees working from home may pose different risks to an organisation than office-based workers.
As such, employers may have introduced, or considered introducing, additional pre-employment checks and/or employee rescreening programmes for their home-based and hybrid workers. These could include social media checks for new remote hires or periodic criminal record checks for the existing workforce.
Will the changes in the way that many businesses have been operating and hiring in 2021 have led to a change in the background screening services being utilised this year?
Adoption of applicant tracking systems
In 2021, only half of survey respondents from EMEA said that their business utilised an applicant tracking system (ATS). Of those that did, just 44% said that they integrated it with their background screening provider.
With many employers hiring and onboarding higher volumes of candidates last year, it may have become necessary for those who weren’t previously utilising an ATS to consider one to help manage their increased recruitment activity.
Alternatively, companies hiring in multiple countries or regions may have recently implemented an ATS to help create a consistent candidate experience for their recruitment process throughout the business.
Furthermore, employers globally may have chosen to integrate an ATS with their background screening provider to streamline their onboarding processes, improve candidate experience, reduce duplicate data entry, and speed up their time to hire.
So, will more employers be utilising an ATS in 2022? And will employers currently using them have an integration with their screening provider to help improve their candidate experience and support recruitment activity?
Share your voice
We are looking for answers to these questions and more in our 15th Annual Benchmark Survey by asking industry professionals to anonymously share their experiences from the last 12 months, as well as their predictions for the year ahead.
The survey, which is live until Monday, 21 March, at 11:59 pm (BST), should take less than 10 minutes to complete.
Afterwards, you can opt to receive an advance copy of our annual report, which includes insights from within the region, as well as across the world, on the state of HR in 2022.