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As some states are enacting or ramping up their stay at home orders, others are starting their plans to open back up. Along with the President’s guidelines on “Opening Up America,” there are many safety measures outlined that businesses will need to follow. Add to that the EEO guidelines, and many companies are now in uncharted waters. This leaves many scrambling to develop new processes and completely change the way they do business.

Whether you’re an essential business trying to keep up with demand or a “non-essential” business hoping to get back up and running as soon as possible, SELECTiON.COM® is here to support you in any way we can.

We’ve compiled a list of the President’s and EEO’s guidelines that specifically pertain to hiring below.

Opening Up America

According to the President’s “Opening Up America” guidelines, businesses should develop and implement appropriate policies, in accordance with Federal, State, and local regulations and guidance, and informed by industry best practices, regarding:

  • Social distancing and protective equipment
  • Temperature checks
  • Sanitation
  • Use and disinfection of common and high-traffic areas
  • Business travel

Businesses should also monitor the workforce for indicative symptoms. Do not allow symptomatic people to physically return to work until cleared by a medical provider. And they should also develop and implement policies and procedures for workforce contact tracing following employee COVID+ test.

COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws

Hiring and Onboarding

  • An employer may screen job applicants for symptoms of COVID-19 after making a conditional job offer, as long as it does so for all entering employees in the same type of job. This ADA rule applies whether or not the applicant has a disability.
  • Employers may take an applicant’s temperature as part of a post-offer, pre-employment medical exam.
  • Depending on the results of these exams, employers may delay the start date of an applicant who has COVID-19 symptoms or symptoms associated with it.
  • Employers may also withdraw a job offer if it needs the applicant to start immediately, but the individual has COVID-19 or symptoms of it.
  • The employer may NOT postpone the start date or withdraw a job offer because an individual is 65 years old or pregnant, both of which would place them at higher risk from COVID-19. However, an employer may choose to allow telework or to discuss with these individuals if they would like to postpone the start date.

For the full article by the EEOC, click here. To support these efforts, the government has created some temporary policies regarding E-Verify and form I-9 as outlined in their press release. They include allowances for the electronic review of Section 2 documents until normal operations resume.

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we hire, at least into the foreseeable future, but don’t let that deter you from a thorough background screening. With the high demand for new workers, companies may be tempted to forego background checks to speed up the hiring process. However, with all the uncertainty going around, we would argue that now is the most crucial time to stay vigilant. You need to protect your employees and customers, and background checks are one of the most effective ways of doing that.

How SELECTiON.COM® can help

SELECTiON.COM® has the tools you need to navigate these uncertain times. Now, as always, we’re offering our Applicant Entry system to clients at no additional charge. This account feature is an easy way to both same yourself some time and quickly and easily convert your hiring process to facilitate both prospective in-house and remote workers.

This feature is especially helpful when hiring those at-risk employees mentioned above, who can only join the workforce remotely for the time being.

Applicant Entry only requires the employer to select the appropriate background check reports, click “send to applicant,” and enter the applicant’s name and email address. The prospective employee will then receive a unique one-time-use secure link to enter their personal information and any additional info needed to complete the background check.

Depending on how you choose to set up your Applicant Entry system, once submitted, their background check can either go on hold until you are ready to move forward with hiring, or it can immediately go into the queue for processing.

We also offer options for your applicants to pay for their background checks. And, if you’d like to skip entering in any of their information, we can set up a direct applicant pay link. Clients with this option activated only need to direct their applicants to this specific link, for them to enter their information and pay.

Research Delays

Though many courthouses are opening back up, some are still closed with unknown open dates. The government shutdowns have caused delays in criminal research, due to courts denying public access to the courthouses. To see how SELECTiON.COM® deals with these delays, see our original “Hiring During the COVID-19 Pandemic” article.

In these uncertain times, it pays to have a trusted partner who can provide the data you need as well as the customer support to answer all the questions you have. Our five-star customer support team is not only industry experienced, but tenured in their time with our company. Even throughout the chaos of the COVID-19 outbreak, our staff is still available to you via phone, email, and chat, Monday through Friday, from 8 am to 8 pm.

Contact us today to add Applicant Entry to your account and see how SELECTiON.COM® can take your employment background check process from in-person to remote.   

This article gives a general overview of the legal matters. However, it is your responsibility to ensure compliance with all the relevant federal, state, and local laws governing this area. SELECTiON.COM® does not provide legal advice, and we always suggest consulting your legal counsel for all applicant approval matters.