Earlier this month, McKnight's Long-Term Care News reported that a woman in Texas lied about her credentials, posing at a nurse at five different skilled nursing facilities. The article was not a major headline, but it raises a major issue: How can LTC facilities prevent the same thing from happening to them?
It was quite a scheme she had going. Every time an employer discovered that she wasn't a nurse, she left the facility and promptly sought employment in another city. Eventually, the truth caught up to her. The Texas Board of Nursing discovered that she had used the name and nursing license number of a registered nurse with a name similar to hers.
While you may not experience fraud at the level described here, candidate misrepresentation is still a problem for recruiters. The HireRight 2017 Employment Screening Benchmark Report found the following:
Following are several hiring best practices that can help your organization avoid being the victim of a scam like the one in Texas — and avoid putting your patients at risk of inadequate care:
Automated recruiting and HR/Onboarding software can assist you in verifying candidate identities and certifications. In addition, these systems can store and remind you when important certifications are set to expire and require action on the part of the employee to stay up to date. You must be vigilant with your existing staff when it comes to certifications. Professional certifications expire or require continuing education to remain in effect. You must stay on top of this to remain compliant with government regulations.
Long-term care facilities take many precautions to ensure that their residents are safe — such as security systems, cameras, bed safety rails, efforts to prevent falls. This incident, however, underscores the importance of hiring qualified, credentialed staff. Without it, all other safety precautions may not matter.
The SmartLinx Applicant Tracker system and HR module can help you with the candidate identity and credential verification processes. Our products enable creation and storage of the I-9 documentation. They are integrated with the government's E-Verify process/site, and are directly integrated with a background check provider as well. Our Attest software helps you monitor and track employees required continuing education. And, coming soon, our time clocks will notify employees whose certifications are about to expire. Using all these tools together can enable your hiring specialists to feel confident about hiring the right people to be part of your team and provide the high level of service you are committed to providing to your clients every day.