Pulse January 2023 | Page 22

New York .“ When they get the report from their background investigations vendor , they need to evaluate the nature of any criminal convictions and determine if they need to do any further assessments .”
During this evaluation , Corcoran urged spa executives to discuss any findings with the job candidate directly . “ Ask questions about the conviction ,” she said .“ Is there anything about the circumstances ( the spa ) should know about ?” This creates an opportunity for the applicant to discuss how long they were incarcerated , their efforts toward rehabilitation and what they have been doing with their lives since their release , including work and education history . For example , if the applicant has received a certificate of good conduct in a certain jurisdiction ,“ this is a factor that should be given heavy weight in evaluating the candidate , although employers do not often ask about it ,” she said .
Time is of the essence
In general , spa executives do not conduct a background check prior to extending a job offer . Instead , offers are contingent on an acceptable background check . The U . S ., for example , does not maintain a national database of criminal convictions . Therefore , spas will have to hire a vendor to check each location where the job candidate has lived over the past seven to 10 years . “ It can be very time consuming ,” said Rebecca Mazin , human resources consultant with Recruit Right in New York .
While waiting for the results of the background check , spas can use other screening tools , like confirming all information provided on the job application , to ensure the job candidate is representing their background truthfully . Above all , spa executives should be sure to keep notes of every interaction with the job applicant . “ Have this dialogue and document the process ,” said Corcoran . “ You have to show that you are making the decision based on facts and information and the nature of the job , as well as business necessity .”
This documentation is particularly important if the background check reveals any red flags or areas of concern . “ It is important to decide if something that comes up during a background check , such as a conviction for drug possession , relates to the job involved ,” said Mazin . It is also important to give the job candidate the opportunity to rebut any negative information revealed during the background check .
Mitigating circumstances could reduce the impact of a criminal conviction , such as the candidate ’ s age when they committed the offense , how long ago they committed it and proof that the candidate has maintained a good employment record for a suitable period since serving their sentence . For example , a spa might not disqualify “ someone who once served time for auto theft committed when they were 19 years old ,” said Mazin .
“ Spas , by nature , create close contact situations with clients ,” said Mazin . Compelling arguments against hiring someone based on past criminal behavior may be a result . At the same time , it is important to remember society ’ s view of certain conduct changes over time . For example , some people convicted in the past under certain laws , such as some drug offenses , would not be convicted today because of changing laws and mores .
Whatever method spa executives choose when reviewing a job candidate ’ s background , it is always important to do so responsibly for the sake of the candidate , the spa and its clients . “ Your staff is a direct representation of the business ,” noted Dinu .“ It is important to maintain company integrity and reputation .” n
JOANNE SAMMER is a business and financial writer based in New Jersey .