We’re proud to announce that Kerstin Bagus, our Director of Global Initiatives, has accepted the honor of speaking at the 3rd Annual Compliance Leaders Summit. Hosted by MultiLatin Advisors in Mexico City, the meeting’s theme of “Achieving a Balance Between the Company’s Rights and Those of Employees” helps bring focus to a larger trend in screening—implementation of U.S.-style background checks by companies around the world.
Kerstin holds the prestigious CIPP certification for the U.S., Canada, and Europe, and has more than 30 years of experience in screening and privacy compliance. Here’s what we learned in a quick Q&A:
Why is global screening so important?
We now live in a blended world—your background can easily include significant time spent outside the U.S.—and in order for employers to find the right talent for the right jobs, they have to be able to verify those “outside experiences”.
How does a U.S.-style background check affect a multinational company?
Personal Identity Information (PII) is treated differently around the world. In the U.S. criminal records are defined as public records and therefore often are run for a wide variety of job positions, from grocery store cashier to executive leadership. Due to the infrastructure built in the U.S.—online databases for employment and education history, runners who retrieve court house records, etc.—it’s much easier, cost-effective and less onerous to run this screen. It is also considered to be appropriate due diligence for many job positions. Outside of the U.S., some information is not so widely processed and there may be restrictions on the ability to process searches such as criminal record history searches.
Due to the different definitions of PII in play around the world, applying U.S.-style screening requirements may clash with local norms and local privacy regulations. That puts a strain on the local HR specialist and the U.S.-based company. The local HR staffs are encouraged to work with the multi-national headquarters to come up with background screening protocols that address the corporate office’s goals with the local requirements.
The major takeaway for companies is that the goal is to unify background screening programs and make it relevant for your country. Reputable providers will work with you to make this style of screening compliant with your company’s needs and the local customs where you’re looking to hire.
What’s a major differentiator of a U.S.-style background check?
At ClearStar, we’re in the business of getting people into jobs as soon as possible. That’s why we’ve developed our platform to include candidate portals. Now, domestic and international candidates can enter much of their own PII directly into the system which is automated, connected, and secure. Although the data entry is shifted from the company onto the candidate, it speeds up the screening process, increases accuracy, decreases the number of people handling sensitive information, and eliminates the trail of unsecured document transmission. By saving time and reducing errors, we’re able to get more information in a more timely manner, while saving the company time and money as well. And the candidate can get to work more quickly.
Mexico is a valuable resource for multinational companies—what’s a major takeaway when working with this country?
Mexico is a country to be respected and looked up to in regards of their personal privacy protection. The country has stringent privacy regulations in place and has recently ramped up enforcement of those regulations. All companies, both local and multinational, are now being held responsible for honoring the privacy of Mexican candidates. As global ambassadors of privacy and data security, ClearStar has made it our business to dig deep and understand local regulations throughout the world to both help local candidates get hired faster, and help multinational companies avoid unnecessary policy issues wherever they hire.