Without comprehensive background checks on employees, employers don’t know what they don’t know.
What could you be missing as an employer with a business to protect? While it’s true that many employers opt for background checks on employees in their hiring process, not every employer exercises the proper amount of due-diligence in clearing a prospective employee to work. While different job descriptions will demand different levels of due-diligence, and each field will require a different focus within a person’s background, the bottom line is that some employers fail to go the extra mile when searching for the right person for the job.
Background checks for employees are a common-sense investment in the long-term health of your business. Background checks, when conducted thoroughly and properly, can provide invaluable insight into the candidate being considered for employment. Comprehensive background checks for employees reduce turnover, prevent losses, and protects the social ecosystem of the workplace from things like hostile work environments, decreases in productivity, and erosion of profits. When your business model places employees in close contact with customers in a transient capacity—as in employees regularly service different customers every day in close proximity, typically offsite away from official company property—those employers must go the extra mile in securing comprehensive background checks for employees
For a prime example of why companies must invest in comprehensive background checks for employees, look no further than the ride-share company, Uber. By the very nature of its design, ride-sharing is a system that can place both the drivers and their passengers at risk of physical harm. From the beginning of 2018 to the end of 2019, Uber had received more than 6,000 sexual assault complaints against their drivers. That number sheds a powerful light on a disturbing problem within the company’s hiring processes. “At the scale that Uber operates, we’re going to see both the good and the bad that happens in society because we’re operating so many trips every single day,” said Tony West, Uber’s chief legal officer. Because the nature of ride-sharing places customers in such close, private quarters with their drivers, the threshold for what the company considers fit to drive must be higher. Though Uber claims to thoroughly vet or otherwise screen each employee before they are hired, thee has been testimony from former Uber drivers who said that they began driving the same day they applied—not nearly enough time for a thorough background check into the driver’s history. This can leave Uber open to various forms of litigation on behalf of the victims, including fines and settlements that will erode profits.
Now imagine the company in question isn’t Uber, a multi-million-dollar corporation. The financial impact of even one lawsuit on behalf of a victim who was assaulted by an employee can be devastating to a small business. When your business model places employees in close personal quarters with customers, it’s imperative that you keep the safety of your customers and your business protected. Lauth investigators are there for our clients when they need comprehensive intelligence on a candidate’s background. We can identify candidates whose background should disqualify them from hire and prevent your business losses in the process. Through our licensure by the state, Lauth has access to nation-wide verified databases. These databases paired with our brand of due-diligence and integrity ensure that our clients are getting the intelligence they need to protect their business. If you need our background check services for your business, call 317-951-1100 for a free quote or visit us online at our website.
A nonprofit background check for supervisory board members is not only prudent in the name of good hiring practice, but also in the name of protecting the nonprofit from toxic leadership that can rot the organization from within. Luckily, a private investigator can provide the intelligence needed for full transparency.
When it comes to nonprofits organizations, knowing who to put in charge is paramount to the organization’s mission. When executives or professionals who serve in a supervisory capacity misbehave, it can have devastating consequences for the organization. From litigation to bad public relations, misconduct has the potential to damage the name of a nonprofit organization for years. That’s why it’s so imperative to run comprehensive, thorough nonprofit background checks on supervisory board members and executives.
United Way recently came under fire in the news after allegations surfaced regarding a hostile work environment. An anonymous letter allegedly authored by former employees of Untied way cited instances of racism, harassment, and nepotism on the part of leadership and failure to act on those abuses by leadership. This ended with a Untied Way board member stepping down after she intimidated one of the alleged authors of the letter.
However isolated individual instances of this type of misconduct may seem, the phenomenon of identifying and curing toxic workplace cultures is becoming more urgent. Corporations and nonprofits alike across the country are starting to take a more comprehensive look at how the internal operations of their entity can manifest in harmful ways. Lack of oversight and accountability are two ways in which toxic work environments flourish. That’s why many charitable organizations are opting for nonprofit background checks on their proposed leadership to ensure that the true mission of the nonprofit remains intact.
Private investigators are ideal professionals to conduct nonprofit background checks. They can review the relevant items on a subject’s background check that might interfere with their ability to supervise a nonprofit, such as criminal history, work history, and litigation history. Private investigators have diverse experience in evaluating human behavior and performing a risk assessment regarding their capacity in a supervisory role. Private investigators are able to place such relevant items in context. For example, a long address history might indicate a history of transience, which can translate to lack of dependability and lack of accountability. However, if the subject was forced to move again and again by virtue of their employment, that is important context that is needed in the investigation summary.
There are obvious items that would appear on a background check for a nonprofit board member that would pique interest, such as criminal history and work history. However, a background check does not have to be limited to what’s on paper in a nonprofit background check. Private investigators are adept in reviewing facts found, but they are also adept in searching for what’s outside the databases. Private investigators can locate and speak with former employers, former supervisors, and former supervisees who have worked with the prospective board member. By getting to the human sources during fact-fining in a nonprofit background check, private investigators can illuminate the professional and personal impact of that person on others. This creates a more transparent picture of how a prospective board member may impact the nonprofit.
An internal investigation of United Way’s internal operations downplayed the allegations proffered by those who authored the letter. However, given the misconduct from board members following the allegations, United Way might invest more in nonprofit background checks going forward. If your organization is experiencing pervasive issues with misconduct, including racism, harassment, and discrimination, call Lauth Investigations International today for a free quote on our corporate culture audit program and learn how you can improve your organization from within.
One of the most critical decisions we make in life is who to legally bind ourselves to in matrimony—not only because of the vows we make to each other, but also because the legal union in most states means entitling the other person to half of your assets. There is an unexpected trend of private investigators—especially female private investigators—in countries where arranged marriage is woven into the fabric of culture. Many families seek to control familial relations and extensions for many reasons, like politics, financials, business consolidation, and status. As recently as 2017, arranged marriage accounted for 55% of marriages throughout the globe, leaving traditional marriage in the minority. This creates a niche market for private investigators to properly vet potential spouses in countries like India, China, Pakistan, Japan, and Israel to name a few.
Even though arranged marriage is not a major part of Western
culture, that doesn’t mean that engaged individuals in the United States
shouldn’t do their due-diligence when it comes to their life mate. When it
comes to your assets, you should expect facts, not fiction. That’s why hiring a
private investigator to perform a background check on your intended can save a
great deal of heartache and financial distress. Even a basic background check
from a private investigator can unearth risk factors. Private investigators
will pull criminal history, litigation history, credit history, and history of
residence to corroborate proposed facts about your romantic partner. It’s true
that there are many “people finder” databases on the internet that claim their
results are accurate and worth the cost of purchasing the report, and therefore
an individual could conduct a background check themselves. However, private
investigators must comply with specific security protocol and licensing in
order to have access to verified databases on par with certain law enforcement
agencies. This means that the quality of data entry comes with a much higher
degree of accuracy, and will be updated regularly with regards to both public
and private records. “People finder” databases cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, which
may lead to additional misinformation, especially with regards to criminal and
Private investigators also have years of experience that contextualize
available information on a subject. For example, residence history is
traditionally part of a basic background check. If the subject has a long
history of moving between jurisdictions, or from state-to-state in short
periods of time, a private investigator might examine this information—and based
on context—determine that the subject has a history of transience, which could
indicate a lack of reliability or a flight risk. If a subject’s credit history
is consistently poor, that would be a financial red flag that might disqualify
a subject as a spouse.
Private investigators bring valuable contexts to background
investigations that empower individuals to make critical decisions in their private
or corporate life. When two people get married, they often conduct other litmus
tests in order to determine long-term cohabitation, such as blood tests for
their health, or pre-marital counseling to determine their level of preparation.
Background checks are just another measure for you to ensure that your life and
your livelihood are protected.
Many will be familiar with the recent news of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ high-profile divorce following allegations of infidelity, in which his ex-wife became the richest individual in history by virtue of divorce proceedings. The fallout from executive misconduct can leave a trail of legal fees, government sanctions, violations, and public relations-related crises that can devastate a company from the top down.
Thought to be coined in 1932, the phrase “white collar crime” now refers to a spectrum of frauds and other crimes committed by high-ranking executives and officials. The most common characteristics of white collar crime contain aspects of deceit, concealment, or violation of company policies and/or state and federal law. The motive is financial, with executives skimming off the top of a company’s profits for their own use. These crimes are sometimes thought of as “victimless crimes,” with no regard to how the fallout from a fraud or scheme can impact the company, and therefore the families of its employees. The types of fraud include, but are not limited to:
Cellular phone fraud
Credit card fraud
Health Care Fraud
Weights and measures
Corporate fraud and white collar crime of this nature remain one of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s top priorities when it comes to identifying and indicating perpetrators. While involvement by government agencies may seem like the end of the line, there are ways companies can get out in front of executive misconduct by hiring a private investigator to investigate these matters.
Private investigators have a unique reputation as slick operators who fly under the radar, but they are invaluable professionals to companies in the throes of a corporate crisis because they are independent and objective. Objectivity is the priority when dealing with executive misconduct and white collar crime, as any allegations or evidence presented against the executive must be presented by an individual with no stake in the outcome of the investigation. Private investigators are independently contacted by a business or corporation to investigate the alleged executive misconduct, and can gather evidence and collect witness statements without the air of bias. Because private investigators are independent contractors, there is no fear of reprisal on behalf of coworkers and other employees at the company. This leaves no lead discounted or ignored. They can investigate employees at all levels, and determine how (if at all) the executive is receiving assistance in their fraud from subordinates. One of the most attractive qualities in a private investigator is that their objectivity makes them crucial witnesses in any legal proceedings that may result from the investigation.
Businesses and corporations should never be beholden to CEOs, presidents, and other high-ranking executives who behave badly. Executive misconduct and corruption are like aggressive weeds that must be pulled from the root in order for businesses to flourish. When it comes to rooting out bad leadership, consider hiring a private investigator to navigate a tricky investigative path that can end in quality operations and peace of mind for businesses large and small.
If you have a corporate crisis like executive misconduct, we can help. Call Lauth Investigations International, a family-owned-and-operated investigative firm with over 30 years of providing successful solutions to clients in Indianapolis and throughout the nation. Call 317-951-1100 for a free consultation, or to learn more about our services, please visit our website.
Indianapolis, Indiana is home to many impressive things. The city of over 800,000 is most famous throughout the country as home to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the site of the Indianapolis 500. In addition to a rich visual and performing arts culture, it’s also home to the nation’s largest children’s museum. Families across the United States cheer for one of two major sports franchises based in Indianapolis: the NBA’s Indiana Pacers, and the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts. It’s also home to one of the country’s best private investigators.
Family-owned and operated for more than 30 years, Lauth Investigations International has specialized in complex corporate, financial, and private investigations worldwide. It is one of many private investigation firms based in Indiana’s capital. Given recent crime data, Indianapolis is a city where a well of clientele may never run dry. One of the areas of criminal investigation most associated with private investigators is missing persons and violent crime, so it’s no a wonder why so many private investigators have set up shop in Indianapolis, with violent crime on the rise.
Relative to its size and population, Indianapolis is comparable to Portland, Oregon or Charlotte, North Carolina. Portland has a crime rate of 227 per every 100,000 people, which is lower than the national average crime rate. North Carolina experiences a higher than average crime rate of 441 per every 100,000 people. As of 2016, Indianapolis’ reported crime rate was 823.2 per every 100,000 people. A CBS News report ranking dangerous cities placed Indianapolis as the 12th in the nation, citing the violent crime rate at more than three times the national average.
News media is saturated with headlines concerning violent crimes committed against Hoosiers, so it was a surprise to most when the FBI reported crime was actually down 10% from 2016 to 2017, especially burglaries and robberies which were down 17%. Violence—especially gun violence—however, is climbing. As of October 1st, 2018, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department had investigated 127 homicides and 109 murders, with 12% of those cases attributed to robbery. The recent murder of Tykece Mike-Jones is a tragic example. He was killed over a cell phone he was attempting to sell to a person he contacted through the internet—another in a string of killings IMPD has been putting on blast to warn citizens. According to the FBI, 2017 was the third record-breaking year for crime statistics in Indianapolis, and stats from the first half of this year have projected 2018 will be no different. Law enforcement attributes the overall drop in crime to the increased ubiquity of surveillance cameras in the metropolitan area.
Firms like Lauth Investigations International can assist in many types of criminal investigation. Just as in the case of violent crimes, private investigators combine the skills of law enforcement and the autonomy of a private citizen to conduct concurrent or independent investigations into a person who vanishes under any circumstances. But not all missing persons cases are the result of a person meeting a violent end. As “the crossroads of America,” Indianapolis experiences a moderate to high level of human trafficking. One of the most complex issues in human trafficking is tracking traffickers across multiple jurisdictions as they transport victims from city to city. Law enforcement can often be handcuffed by jurisdictional issues, but private investigators use their autonomy to pole vault over this red tape in pursuit of leads that might otherwise go cold. Due to his experience in complex missing persons investigations, private investigator, Thomas Lauth has worked with Interpol, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. State Department, the U.S. Consulate and other foreign embassies on a myriad of cases, including human trafficking.
Indianapolis private investigators are not limited to cases of violent crime and missing persons, however. Every major metropolitan area will always have cases dealing with infidelity or child custody, but private investigators based in Indianapolis have ample opportunity to service local businesses with their skill-set. Indianapolis is home to a diversified body of businesses, but its five top industries are:
Many business owners—especially small business owners—often are not aware of how a private investigator’s services can protect, or even save, their companies. Every business needs valued employees, and finding the right person can often be an arduous task. The candidate might be qualified, but how much about their record can be independently verified? Hiring a private investigator to do background checks for employees will ensure that any verification of their qualifications will be vetted. In the wake of the #MeToo movement, many employers are making independent background checks a regular step of their hiring process in order to weed out potential predators in their workforce. All types of business can experience the full spectrum of employee theft (from vanishing office supplies to full-on embezzlement), violation of non-compete agreements, and offenses under the umbrella of employee malingering, including FMLA abuse. The independent involvement of a private investigator in the investigation of any employee misconduct will lay a strong foundation for any HR or legal consequences, ensuring that the investigation is thorough and objective from beginning to end. Kristen Justis, the Managing Director of Client Relations for Lauth Investigations International, commented on the role Lauth can play in bolstering local business, “We have a wealth of opportunities to help private citizens every day. We help frantic parents find their missing child, or put a spouse’s suspicions of infidelity at ease, but those are the cases that sensationalize this industry. Many business owners are not aware of how the services we offer can go a long way towards extending the longevity of their businesses.”
Every major industry operating in Indianapolis can rely on the services of a private investigator to protect their business—not just from its own workforce, but potential consumers as well. Finance, insurance, and real estate of all kinds can benefit from a comprehensive vetting of a consumer after their request for services. Financial institutions and insurance brokers may check a consumer’s credit, but a full background check on an applicant can sharpen the big picture when making a cost-benefit analysis regarding any transaction. In the housing industry, any landlord renting or leasing their property can be fully informed about their tenants when they employ a private investigator to run a background check. An analysis of Indianapolis’s economy by the Indianapolis Business Journal concluded that the apartment booms the city experienced were driven largely by empty-nesters and childless millennials, projecting that it would only continue to grow.
Indianapolis already has a national economical reputation for developing and sustaining niche markets, such as the market around motorsports and auto-racing. As the metropolis continues to grow in population and economy, so will the opportunities for Indy-based private investigators to support their community.
Carie McMichael is the Communications and Media Specialist for Lauth Investigations International. She regularly writes on missing person and investigation topics. For more information, please visit our website.