BANGALORE: With candidates of questionable background swamping the job market, enterprises are now beefing up their security thresholds by adding more layers to the hiring process.
A number of players, including big ones like KPMG and Hong Kong-based Quest Research, have stepped in to make the recruitment procedure for companies more stringent with compulsory pre-employment screening, background checks, including criminal record checks and credential validation and verification.
The mass recruitment phenomenon in IT/ITeS, BPO, financial services, telecom and retail sectors has led to a spurt of false CVs and fake candidates. TOI had reported that Wipro had been hit again by candidates who had faked a number of their documents.
"The country's recruitment system is not robust enough to discourage deceptive practices. Circumstances also are such that people get carried away. Without having proper systems and processes in place, it's tough to filter fraud cases, due to the sheer magnitude of hiring,'' says Rohit Mahajan, ED (advisory) in KPMG's newly set up forensic services business in India.
Companies have started investing in hiring systems and a background check is increasingly becoming a mandatory practice. Compensation, experience, technology/domain exposure, education, address and previous employer are often fudged.
According to a study, 15 or 20 out of every 100 resumes carry elements that are false. Another study finds that hiring, training and on-boarding a bad entry-level candidate for three months would cost a company upto Rs 3 lakh. In the case of lateral hirings, the costs are double that.
With verification, hiring costs go up by 12%-15%. Scouting for a candidate's data at colleges they studied at and companies they worked in previously is a time-consuming and expensive affair. What makes matter difficult is that no university in India has online data available for public access, unlike in the US, UK and Europe. So verifying educational data of a candidate takes 15 to 21 days here, whereas it takes only 24 to 48 hours in the US.
"Irrespective of this additional expenditure in cost and time, recruiters today are very particular that their candidates go through a comprehensive verification exercise. Companies are not just keen to know about the integrity of the probable employee, but also what they can expect from that person, since productivity optimization is key to survival," says Madan Padaki, CEO of MeritTrac.
Employers are particular that their critical information is safe and dealt with by legitimate, expert hands. "As a result, employee verification largely outsourced to independent firms is gradually becoming a part of best practices of Indian HR," says Nobby Nazareth, CEO of Evaluationz India, an employee verification firm that has Globe Detective Agency as a partner.
The country currently has over two dozen employee verification agencies and seven of them are certified by National Skills Registry of Nasscom. Depending on the kind of information needed, these agencies charge anything between Rs 1,000 to Rs 5,000 per candidate.