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Background screening has been around for ages. However, as many job seekers are realizing, the Internet is making it that much easier for employers to learn about your employment and criminal history (along with your personal life) at the click of a button. According to the Trends in Employment Background Screening survey by EmployeeScreenIQ, background checks have increased in importance among employers. Background screening is a critical piece of hiring the right employee and avoiding costly mistakes. The latest trends are as follows:
  • Revealing adverse information: 92 percent of employers will reach out to a candidate or consider job relevance when a background check reveals something negative about that individual. A mere 8 percent say they reject a candidate outright.
  • Credit checks: Most employers only check credit history when it’s relevant to the job. One-third of employers don’t perform them at all.
  • Hiring decisions: Qualifications and interviews are the leading influencer in making hiring decisions. Background screening results are just one element in making a hiring decision.
  • Social networking: 66 percent of respondents never check Facebook, LinkedIn and other sites for conducting background checks.
  • Automated hiring decision matrices: Only 15 percent of respondents believe in the value of automated hiring decision matrices; 81 percent don’t use them or are unfamiliar with the concept.
  • Timing of background screening: 43 percent of employers stated they perform a background check before extending an offer to the final candidate(s); 39 percent perform checks post-offer.
The report recognizes today’s employers face a lot of issues with background checks, including “an influx of state and federal laws, increased scrutiny of hiring practices by the EEOC, and new but relatively untested screening tools such as socia media.” What else do today’s job seekers need to know about background screening? Heather R. Huhman, founder & president of Come Recommended, is passionate about helping students and recent college graduates pursue their dream careers. Read more » articles by this approved career expert | Click here » if you’re a career expert Photo credit: Shutterstock
Learn how to land a career you love

Everyone needs to feel their voice is heard and their contributions are important. Something as simple as sharing a drink the last hour of the day on a Friday with the team to recap wins and give praise can build camaraderie within the team.

All of the above are fairly simple to implement but can make a huge difference in morale and motivation. Have any of these tips worked well for young the past? Do you have other tips to motivate your creative team? If so, please share them with me!

Encourage curiosity. Spark debate. Stimulate creativity and your team will be better at handling challenges with flexibility and resourcefulness. Create a safe space for ideas, all ideas, to be heard. In ideation, we need the weird and off-the-wall ideas to spur us on to push through to the great ideas.

Sure, there are a ton of studies done on this, but here is my very unscientific personal take. When team members can make decisions about how they work on projects, they are more engaged and connected to the project outcome. When they see how potentially dropping the ball would affect the entire team, they step up. When they feel like what they are doing is impactful and valued, they are naturally motivated to learn more, and be even better team members.

Rarely does a one-size-fits-all style work when it comes to team motivation. I have found that aligning employee goals with organization goals works well. Taking time to get to know everyone on your team is invaluable. What parts of their job do they love? What do they not enjoy? What skills do they want to learn? Even going so far as to where they see themselves in five years career-wise. These questions help you right-fit projects, and help your team see you are committed to creating a career path for them within the company.

Most designers I know love a good challenge. We are problem solvers by nature. Consistently give yourself and your team small challenges, both design-related and not. It will promote openness within the team to collaborate, and it will help generate ideas faster in the long run. Whether the challenge is to find a more exciting way to present an idea to stakeholders or fitting a new tool into the budget, make it a challenge just to shake things up.