Pre-Employment Background Checks May Expose a History of Violence

The Occupational Health and Safety Act (OSHA) requires employers to provide a workplace that’s free of identifiable hazards capable of causing physical or psychological harm. This means that employers are obligated under the law to avoid hiring employees with an identifiable history of violence and to take appropriate action to ensure they are hiring people who do not have a history of violent behavior.

History of Violence

Of course knowing that hiring people with a history of violence is a risk for any business is one thing. Determining that history of violence can be a little bit tricky.

Laws also exist to protect job applicants with an arrest on their records. There are many reasons for this. Not the least of which is the fact that an arrest is not the same thing as a conviction. Then there’s the added problem that it’s hard to rehabilitate some offenders if they are never given a second chance to become gainfully employed.

Employers Should be Concerned if a History of Violence is Exposed in an Employment Background Check

So, how do employers walk the tightrope between protecting their business interests, customers, and employees from potentially violent offenders or dangerous employees, and protecting their businesses from lawsuits and the potential legal, reputation, and financial fallout that is possible if a criminal report is used improperly?

The best way, by far, is to conduct a thorough criminal and background investigation on all candidates they are considering for employment. Not only are background investigations excellent tools for verifying references and education and work histories, but criminal background checks are also great for identifying a history of violent crimes as well.

That isn’t to say that every candidate with violence in his or her history is a bad candidate or even likely to bring violence into the workplace today. Avoid focusing on one single act or even acts that took place decades ago and look at the whole history of the candidate instead. This is what using a quality firm to handle the employment screening for all potential employees helps businesses to do – look at the big picture and assess the risks.

Using a reputable service to conduct criminal background checks on all candidates in consideration for employment can help businesses avoid a great deal of aggravation as well as the risks associated with hiring potentially violent employees who have had a history of violence.

Disclaimer: The information on InstantCriminalChecks.com is governed by our Terms of Use and is never intended as legal advice.

5 Stark Realities of Freelancing Jobs

Freelancing JobsIt’s a safe bet that just about everyone, at one time or another has dreamed about being their own boss. Most people envision working from home in sweats and tees, setting their own hours, choosing their own assignments, blissfully free of long commutes and traffic jams, irritating co-workers, unreasonable bosses, and tiny cubicles. And it’s true that freelancing jobs can offer all of those perks, and then some. With constantly evolving technologies and mobile devices, millions of workers every year, often fed up with trying to find a job, turn to freelancing as an ever more viable alternative, and employers are welcoming them with open arms. Most employers will still require pre-employment background checks which may include criminal background checks. Freelancing can be a very rewarding career option, but it requires a considerable change of lifestyle, and should be carefully considered before one takes the leap.

Here are five hard realities of freelancing jobs:

  1. Freelancing is a whole new ballgame. It requires a completely different approach to work. Transitioning from a 9 to 5 job to being self-employed can be quite a culture shock. It’s possible to develop the self-discipline necessary to meet deadlines and complete assignments without supervision, but many will find it difficult at first. On the other hand, for some it just comes naturally. And unlike having a regular salary or hourly paycheck, if the freelancer isn’t working, they aren’t earning.
  2. Freelancers work more hours. Unless they hire extra help, freelancers have to do everything themselves, administrative chores, bookkeeping and billing, marketing and acquiring new clients. And none of this pays anything for the time spent on it. In general, a freelancer will work more than 40 hours a week. But their hours are arguably more pleasant, spent for the benefit of one’s own advancement.
  3. Freelancing jobs are a lonely profession. Social isolation is an occupational hazard of most freelancing jobs. Pets, plants, and talk radio are poor replacements for interaction with real human beings. There are many ways to counter the lonely hours spent working, but it takes an effort, which can be a lot of fun.
  4. Freelancing jobs has ups and downs. As in, availability of work. Sometimes the workload will seem overwhelming, other times the phone just isn’t ringing. Good money management skills are a must to weather lean times.
  5. Freelancers have real jobs. Many people have a hard time wrapping their heads around freelancing jobs. If a person isn’t commuting to a brick and mortar structure, they can’t have a real job now, can they? It’s an attitude that freelancers just get used to, and one that will change as freelancing jobs becomes more common.

Disclaimer: The information on InstantCriminalChecks.com is governed by our Terms of Use and is never intended as legal advice.

Providing Leadership for Working Millennials

As the workforce gets younger, the amount of Millennials comprising your team is growing. It is important to understand how they think in order to be a good leader and manager for them. Providing leadership for working millennials means changing your own patterns of thinking and stepping into their shoes. Here are some tips to get you started.

Working Millennials

Be Ethical

Working millennials are looking for ethics and honesty in their leaders above and beyond any other values. To build trust with them, you need to exhibit ethical behavior in how you manage your team and in general work situations according to a recent survey by IBM. IBM studied employees in 12 countries to achieve the results from this survey.

Be Transparent

Since they have grown up in a world where you can look up anything you want on the Internet, working millennials value transparency. They are information collectors, and hiding information from them will not help you curry favor. Instead, acting in a transparent manner in your leadership role will gain their trust, help you build a loyal team, and lead to employee happiness.

Be Dependable and Consistent

Working millennials are looking for a leader that they can rely on. Following through on your commitments to them will hold you in good stead as a manager. By being dependable in a consistent manner, you will prove your reliability and give them a reason to trust and rely on you. Consistent dependability is a characteristic that they can see through your actions as a leader.

Be Open to New Ideas

Working millennials want a team leader who is open and accepting of new opportunities and ideas. They don’t need to be appreciated as much as heard when they offer their opinions and suggestions for the workplace. By listening to what they have to say, and considering their point-of-view seriously, you can build a solid working relationship with your team.

Clearly Define Expectations

As someone leading a team, having clearly defined expectations is always helpful. In the spectrum of behaviors valued by millennials in the workplace, this one comes in as number five. While not as important as the previous four values, clearly defined expectations are still important to Millennials. By defining your expectations, you are giving them clear indicators of what they need to do to do well and advance. As information seekers, they can put this information in their “vault” to keep in mind as they work.

Disclaimer: The information on InstantCriminalChecks.com is governed by our Terms of Use and is never intended as legal advice.

Wyoming Employment Background Check Information and Wyoming (WY) Criminal Data

Wyoming Employment Background CheckDid you know Wyoming is the least populous state in the USA? This week we are discussing Wyoming employment background check information, WY crime data, and other general Wyoming state info in our weekly blog series, “Criminal Data and Employment Background Check Information for Your Favorite State”!

About Wyoming*

Wyoming Population and Age Distribution. Wyoming’s estimated population was 0.6 million. The median age was 36.9 years. 24% of the population was under the age of 18, and 13% was 65 years and over.

Median Household Income. The median income of households was $54,901. The total number of households was 223,513 with an average of 2.52 people.

Wyoming Employment and Unemployment Rate. 63.6% of the Wyoming population over the age of 15 were employed which ranks 8th in the nation. The Wyoming unemployment rate is 5.6% which was ranked 47th in the country.

Types of Wyoming Employers. The types of employers in Wyoming were as follows: 21,206 (7.3%) were self-employed, 57,061 (19.8%) were employed by the federal, state, or local government and 210,171 (72.8%) were employed by the private sector.

Top Five Wyoming Industries. The top five industries by percent in Wyoming were: Educational Services and Health Care (20.7%), Agriculture/Forestry/Fishing/Hunting/Mining (12.7%), Accommodations/Food Service/Entertainment (10.7%), Retail (10.1%), and Construction (8.2%),

Wyoming Occupations. Occupations for the population employed (over the age of 15) in Wyoming’s private sector were: Business, Science, and Arts (31.6%), Sales and Office (21.1%), Service (18.3%), Natural Resources, Construction, and Maintenance (16.4%), and Production, Transportation, and Material Moving (12.6%).

Wyoming Health Insurance Coverage. 85% of the civilian non-institutionalized population had health insurance coverage (15% had no coverage). Of those with coverage, 69% had private coverage and 28% had public coverage.

Disability. 12% of the civilian non-institutionalized population of Wyoming reported a disability. The Wyoming disability claim rate was ranked 32nd in the country.

For a list of Wyoming counties, cities, towns, and county court houses, click here.

Wyoming Crime Data*

Total Violent Crimes. Wyoming had 1,161 total violent crimes (which ranked 51st in the nation) and with a violent crime rate of 0.28% (which ranked it 34th among all the states including DC & PR). Of the total number of violent crimes, 14 were murders, 154 were forcible rapes, 61 were robberies, and 932 were aggravated assaults.

Property Crime. Wyoming had 13,222 total property crimes. Of the total number of property crimes, 2,125 were burglaries, 10,513 were larceny/thefts, and 584 were motor vehicle thefts.

Law Enforcement. Wyoming had the 12th most law enforcement employees per population. Wyoming ranked 11th in the nation for the most police officers per population.

For more Wyoming crime information, please see the Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI).

Wyoming Employment Background Check Products

InstantCriminalChecks.com offers two Wyoming employment background check products: a Wyoming county criminal background check and a Wyoming state criminal background check.

The Wyoming state criminal background check includes a Wyoming corrections background check, a sex offender record search of Wyoming as well as the entire country, and a search of the Most Wanted List. The corrections background check pulls from records of persons sentenced to a Wyoming detention facility. The Wyoming state criminal background check is “non-instant” and results are provided within seven to fourteen business days. The price of this product is only $24.95. For the full description, please visit our Wyoming criminal background check webpage.

The Wyoming county criminal background check will return felony and misdemeanor convictions and deferred judgments over the past seven years from the Circuit and District courts. The Wyoming county criminal check results are provided within five to seven business days. The cost of this product is $24.95.

Other Wyoming employment background check products include an instant national criminal background check that searches 46 states and D.C. (this product is $59.95) and a 3-state criminal background check (this product is $39.90).

*Sources: U.S. Census Bureau and FBI. “About Wyoming” data is from 2011. “Wyoming Crime Data” data is from 2012.

Wisconsin Employment Background Check Information and Wisconsin (WI) Criminal Data

Wisconsin Employment Background CheckDid you know Wisconsin is known as “America’s Dairyland” and is famous for cheese? This week we are discussing Wisconsin employment background check information, WI crime data, and other general Wisconsin state info in our weekly blog series, “Criminal Data and Employment Background Check Information for Your Favorite State”!

About Wisconsin*

Wisconsin Population and Age Distribution. Wisconsin’s estimated population was 5.7 million. The median age was 38.8 years. 23% of the population was under the age of 18, and 14% was 65 years and over.

Median Household Income. The median income of households was $51,059. The total number of households was 2,288,362 with an average of 2.44 people.

Wisconsin Employment and Unemployment Rate. 62.3% of the Wisconsin population over the age of 15 were employed which ranks 13th in the nation. The Wisconsin unemployment rate is 7.3% which was ranked 37th in the country.

Types of Wisconsin Employers. The types of employers in Wisconsin were as follows: 143,393 (5%) were self-employed, 356,795 (12.5%) were employed by the federal, state, or local government and 2,339,871 (82.3%) were employed by the private sector.

Top Five Wisconsin Industries. The top five industries by percent in Wisconsin were: Educational Services and Health Care (23.7%), Manufacturing (18.4%), Retail (11.2%), Accommodations/Food Service/Entertainment (8.7%), and Professional/Administrative/Scientific (7.9%).

Wisconsin Occupations. Occupations for the population employed (over the age of 15) in Wisconsin’s private sector were: Business, Science, and Arts (34.5%), Sales and Office (23.4%), Production, Transportation, and Material Moving (16.9%), Service (16.8%), and Natural Resources, Construction, and Maintenance (8.3%).

Wisconsin Health Insurance Coverage. 91% of the civilian non-institutionalized population had health insurance coverage (9% had no coverage). Of those with coverage, 72% had private coverage and 31% had public coverage.

Disability. 11% of the civilian non-institutionalized population of Wisconsin reported a disability. The Wisconsin disability claim rate was ranked 37th in the country.

For a list of Wisconsin counties, cities, towns, and county court houses, click here.

Wisconsin Crime Data*

Total Violent Crimes. Wisconsin had 16,064 total violent crimes (which ranked 24th in the nation) and with a violent crime rate of 0.32% (which ranked it 28th among all the states including DC & PR). Of the total number of violent crimes, 173 were murders, 1,219 were forcible rapes, 4,622 were robberies, and 10,050 were aggravated assaults.

Property Crime. Wisconsin had 140,513 total property crimes. Of the total number of property crimes, 27,945 were burglaries, 104,352 were larceny/thefts, and 8,216 were motor vehicle thefts.

Law Enforcement. Wisconsin had the 23rd most law enforcement employees per population. Wisconsin ranked 26th in the nation for the most police officers per population.

For more Wisconsin crime information, please see the Wisconsin Public Records of the Wisconsin Circuit Courts Access (WCCA).

Wisconsin Employment Background Check Products

InstantCriminalChecks.com offers two Wisconsin employment background check products: a Wisconsin county criminal background check and a Wisconsin state criminal background check.

The Wisconsin state criminal background check includes a Wisconsin courts background check, a Wisconsin corrections background check, a sex offender record search of Wisconsin as well as the entire country, and a search of the Most Wanted List. The Wisconsin Administrator of Courts background check pulls from traffic, misdemeanor, and felony case records. The Wisconsin state criminal background check is “instant” and results are received within seconds of placing an order. The price of this product is only $24.95. For the full description, please visit our Wisconsin criminal background check webpage.

The Wisconsin county criminal background check will return felony and misdemeanor convictions and deferred judgments over the past seven years from the Circuit courts. The Wisconsin county criminal check results are provided within one to three business days. The cost of this product is $24.95.

Other Wisconsin employment background check products include an instant national criminal background check that searches 46 states and D.C. (this product is $59.95) and a 3-state criminal background check (this product is $39.90).

*Sources: U.S. Census Bureau and FBI. “About Wisconsin” data is from 2011. “Wisconsin Crime Data” data is from 2012.

West Virginia Employment Background Check Information and WV Criminal Data

West Virginia Employment Background CheckDid you know West Virginia broke away from Virginia to become its own state in 1861 during the American Civil War? This week we are discussing West Virginia employment background check information, WV crime data, and other general West Virginia state info in our weekly blog series, “Criminal Data and Employment Background Check Information for Your Favorite State”!

About West Virginia*

West Virginia Population and Age Distribution. West Virginia’s estimated population was 1.9 million. The median age was 41.5 years. 21% of the population was under the age of 18, and 17% was 65 years and over.

Median Household Income. The median income of households was $40,196. The total number of households was 741,544 with an average of 2.44 people.

West Virginia Employment and Unemployment Rate. 49.7% of the West Virginia population over the age of 15 were employed which ranks 51 st in the nation. The West Virginia unemployment rate is 8.0% which was ranked 33rd in the country.

Types of West Virginia Employers. The types of employers in West Virginia were as follows: 33,580 (4.5%) were self-employed, 141,793 (18.8%) were employed by the federal, state, or local government and 576,303 (76.6%) were employed by the private sector.

Top Five West Virginia Industries. The top five industries by percent in West Virginia were: Educational Services and Health Care (26%), Retail (13.3%), Accommodations/Food Service/Entertainment (9.2%), Manufacturing (8.2%), and Professional/Administrative/Scientific (7.8%).

West Virginia Occupations. Occupations for the population employed (over the age of 15) in West Virginia’s private sector were: Business, Science, and Arts (31.5%), Sales and Office (24.8%), Service (18.7%), Production, Transportation, and Material Moving (12.9%), and Natural Resources, Construction, and Maintenance (12.2%).

West Virginia Health Insurance Coverage. 86% of the civilian non-institutionalized population had health insurance coverage (14% had no coverage). Of those with coverage, 63% had private coverage and 37% had public coverage.

Disability. 19% of the civilian non-institutionalized population of West Virginia reported a disability. The West Virginia disability claim rate was ranked 1st in the country.

For a list of West Virginia counties, cities, towns, and county court houses, click here.

West Virginia Crime Data*

Total Violent Crimes. West Virginia had 5,869 total violent crimes (which ranked 39th in the nation) and with a violent crime rate of 0.30% (which ranked it 31st among all the states including DC & PR). Of the total number of violent crimes, 72 were murders, 421 were forcible rapes, 838 were robberies, and 4,538 were aggravated assaults.

Property Crime. West Virginia had 43,878 total property crimes. Of the total number of property crimes, 11,291 were burglaries, 30,378 were larceny/thefts, and 2,209 were motor vehicle thefts.

Law Enforcement. West Virginia had the 47th most law enforcement employees per population. West Virginia ranked 41st in the nation for the most police officers per population.

For more West Virginia crime information, please see the West Virginia Judiciary court system and the Supreme Court of Appeals.

West Virginia Employment Background Check Products

InstantCriminalChecks.com offers two West Virginia employment background check products: a West Virginia county criminal background check and a West Virginia state criminal background check.

The West Virginia state criminal background check includes a West Virginia corrections background check, WV circuit court background check, a sex offender record search of West Virginia as well as the entire country, and a search of the Most Wanted List. The corrections background check pulls offender records from the West Virginia Department of Corrections. The West Virginia state criminal background check is “instant” and results are received within seconds of placing an order. The price of this product is only $24.95. For the full description, please visit our West Virginia criminal background check webpage.

The West Virginia county criminal background check will return felony and misdemeanor convictions and deferred judgments over the past seven years from the Magistrate courts and Circuit courts. The West Virginia county criminal check results are provided within one to three business days. The cost of this product is $24.95.

Other West Virginia employment background check products include an instant national criminal background check that searches 46 states and D.C. (this product is $59.95) and a 3-state criminal background check (this product is $39.90).

*Sources: U.S. Census Bureau and FBI. “About West Virginia” data is from 2011. “West Virginia Crime Data” data is from 2012.