3 Keys to Optimize Your Contractor Screening Processes

July 20, 2021 | Shannon Shoemaker

Whenever you introduce a new person into your work setting, you introduce a new risk. And not performing background checks on contract or gig workers creates an even bigger legal risk, as ride-hailing platforms Lyft and Uber recently found out: Both companies were named in a case alleging that Lyft hadn’t performed sufficient background checks on drivers.

Background checks are just as critical for contractors as employees. Not conducting background screening puts you at risk for losing your workforce and your customers’ trust in your company. But historically, contractor screening hasn’t been governed by the same checks and balances as employee background screening, making it difficult for employers to verify that vendors are actually screening their contractors.

Here’s how to seamlessly integrate background checks into your contractor hiring process.


Set Specific Screening Criteria

Criminal background checks on contract labor are important for protecting workforce safety and the host company’s reputation. In the past, companies have been vague about the types of screening they’d like vendor partners to perform on contractors. And a vague ask often results in inadequate background screening, which increases risk to the host company.

Using Cisive’s ContractorDirect program, host companies can designate Cisive as their preferred vendor screening company or preferred partner. The host company establishes the screening requirements before the contractor is taken on, including adjudication criteria. Once the criteria has been set, it’s consistently applied for all future background checks.


Build Confidence in Virtual Onboarding

For companies operating remotely, contractors may not pose a physical threat to the workforce but could put customer data and other proprietary information at risk. Hiring and onboarding contractors virtually adds another layer of complexity because contractor verification becomes even more important when you can’t meet people in person.

There’s an increased sense of urgency to verify background information prior to onboarding a contractor (who you may never meet) and giving them access to sensitive information. ContractorDirect solves that problem by performing a thorough, consistent background check on all contractors before they’re onboarded by the host company.


Allow Contractors to Authorize Their Own Check

Traditionally, vendors have to sign contracts with background screening partners to authorize the background check process. Going through that administrative process can add days (if not weeks) to what should otherwise be a simple background check. The timeliness of onboarding a new contractor is contingent on the vendor’s responsiveness.

ContractorDirect allows host companies to bypass this lengthy contract process. Host companies identify approved vendors and send Cisive their background screening criteria and what services they’re contracting the vendor for. Then, Cisive generates a communication to the vendor, giving the contractor an encrypted link to authorize their own background check.

Everything, even drug tests, can be scheduled through the mobile-friendly ContractorDirect portal.

In a post-COVID-19 world, more people will demand flexible work options, and that means that more companies will be looking to contractors for top talent. Organizations need to move fast to onboard talent, so don’t let an inefficient contractor screening process slow you down.


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