Employers Beware Potential Skeletons in Executives’ Closets

Executives may not be as thoroughly vetted in the hiring process as other employees, potentially leading to bad hires at the top of the company, lawsuits and scandal.

“A lot of companies rely too much on the background checks that have been performed” at previous employers because they assume that the job candidate couldn’t have reached the executive level without thorough screening, Andrew Challenger, vice president of consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, told Bloomberg BNA.

He cautioned that this is a bad practice because different employers have different screening criteria and a previous employer may also have relied on a past company’s employment screening.

The potential risk of hiring an executive who misrepresents himself or herself is much greater than for rank-and-file employees because executives have the most access to sensitive company information and the greatest ability to commit fraud, Challenger said.

Companies continue to not screen executives as closely as other employees, Mary O’Loughlin, vice president of global customer experience and product management at screening company HireRight, told Bloomberg BNA April 26. In 2017, 16 percent of 4,000 HR professionalssurveyed by HireRight either agreed or strongly agreed they had a less-rigorous process for screening executives than other hires. This is probably because these high-profile positions are often decided on “gut instinct,” O’Loughlin said. FULL ARTICLE