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Study finds overwhelming support for employment background checks

A recent survey on employment background checks finds the vast majority of Americans supports and expects employers to conduct regular background checks on prospective employees. 

Of additional importance to medical office managers is that the number one place Americans expect to feel safe is their doctor’s office.

Some key takeaways from the survey include:

  • 95 percent of Americans think background checks should be mandatory to determine whether a person has a criminal background before he or she takes on the responsibilities of a job.
  • 81 percent of Americans believe that feeling safe at all times is their right, and the workplace is one of the top two locations where they expect to feel safe.
  • Safety pervades the top-five topics survey respondents identified as “most important to be discussed in the presidential debates this year.”
  • 68 percent of Americans surveyed indicate that they are willing to undergo background checks themselves, demonstrating that it is not just something they believe should be in place for others.
  • 78 percent expect to feel safe at their workplace, second only to their doctor’s office (83 percent).
  • 65 percent believe that background checks provide them with a sense of safety in the workplace.

The survey, one of the largest of its kind among the U.S. population on the subject of background screening, was commissioned by Sterling Talent Solutions, one of the world’s largest background screening and on-boarding solutions providers, and conducted by Kelton Global, a leading global insights firm which works with more than 100 of the Fortune 500 and thousands of smaller companies and organizations.

“For too long, the debate about background checks has failed to take into account how everyday Americans actually feel about the role background checks play in their daily life – namely to keep them safe – and has instead focused on issues promoted by constituents with their own misconceptions of this important exercise in due diligence and public safety,” says Clare Hart, chief executive officer of Sterling. “Importantly, contrary to much of what’s been reported in the media, only 14 percent of Americans consider background checks to be an invasion of privacy.”

Other key findings from the survey include:

Americans are especially concerned about background checks for workers who are responsible for lives. Sixty-six percent of respondents say it should be mandatory for airline pilots to have background checks.

Medical office managers, take note: Respondents also support mandatory checks for those who prescribe medication (63 percent).

In addition, respondents support mandatory checks for those who represent people in legal matters (56 percent), and those employed to drive or chauffeur others (44 percent).

Editor’s picks:

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