Featured guest post by Nick Fishman, Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at EmployeeScreenIQ

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Integrity tests are “almost all paper-and-pencil [tests]… administered to job applicants at some stage of the screening and selection process.” Although they seem very retro and low-tech, their effectiveness and preventative results are often underestimated. A study by Princeton University finds that of the employees administered an integrity test, 1 to 6% of them ended up stealing from their employer, whereas 3% to 27% of employees who were not administered an integrity test ended up stealing from their employer.

Integrity tests are not solely used by companies to weed out potential thieves. The study finds that some companies use these tests to gauge whether potential employees are more likely to engage in “workplace deviance, [including] especially lateness, abuse of sick leave, participating in strikes, and absenteeism (which are referred to as time theft).” Also, an “industry-based estimate of annual losses to U.S. businesses from 11 nonviolent crimes, including but not limited to employee theft, vandalism, and bribery, [amounted to] $40 billion per year.”

The study’s data reports that up to 35% of employees across various fields engage in some kind of theft toward their employer. This ranges from extra reimbursement, time theft, to taking office supplies. You should consider integrity tests as an integral part of your pre-employment screening process in order to decrease this already high percentage.

If you are planning on utilizing integrity tests, it’s best to use ones that have been developed by top psychologists. Many reputable screening companies routinely outsource their integrity test formulation to university psychology professors. Your best chances of retaining the services of a careful, competent, and professional screening company is one who has been accredited by the NAPBS which only accredits 2% of employee screening companies.

EmployeeScreenIQ is an industry leading global employment screening resource providing employers with the information they need to make smart hiring decisions through the use of background checks and substance abuse screening. EmployScreenIQ is a preferred Newton background partner. When employers choose EmployeeScreenIQ and Newton, they receive a seamless solution combining a best-in-class applicant tracking system with leading employment screening resources all supported by industry experts.

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