For the latest updates on Screening during COVID-19 – click here

Homepage hero

Employment Screening News

Our role with Government trade bodies and our influence on legislation changes places us firmly as leaders in the UK screening market. Visit this page for industry leading information on innovation, technology developments, policy trends, and changes, future plans and strategy from UK Government and Governments of the devolved nations.

We are working with UK GOV to ensure that the screening process is being reviewed, as there are obvious challenges due to COVID-19 (coronavirus). Some of this is around meeting face to face with a potential candidate to complete an identity check. Therefore, we have influenced various regulators to change their approach in these unprecedented times.

Keep Britain Working

21st April 2020

Keep Britain Working - We want to bring people together during this National Emergency through a campaign to #KeepBritainWorking. The objective of the campaign is simple, to preserve jobs and to protect livelihoods.

These are challenging times. The COVID-19 pandemic has wrecked lives and decimated many businesses across the UK. Many companies and workers are facing anxious days and weeks ahead. Whether you're looking for work or seeking ways to sustain your business, help is at hand.

Keep Britain Working will help redeploy workers from struggling sectors to in-demand ones, help people who have lost their jobs find new ones, share and implement the best ideas to help the country keep working, and get people back into work. We want to share ideas, encourage good practice and help individuals and the economy to recover.

The campaign launched on keepbritainworking.com and encourages businesses and working people to make pledges to #KeepBritainWorking both during the crisis and beyond. The website also serves as a hub for sharing ideas and advice; including resources to support companies and their employees during this most difficult of times. Here you can find guidance and support on working, on boarding and sharing tips on remote working.

We pledge to #KeepBritainWorking by offering free and subsidised 24/7 employee screening services to ensure people can hire who they need, when they need.

Keep Britain Working has received support from Lord Alan Sugar, James Timpson, and Severn Trent chief executive, Liv Garfield. MPs Penny Mordaunt, Steve Brine and Caroline Nokes have also given the movement their backing, alongside business group the CBI. Trade organisations Recruitment & Employment Confederation and the Family Business Place are also on board.

Visit #KeepBritainWorking here

Disclosure Scotland Basic checks are back!

17th June 2020

Great news for UK employers - Disclosure Scotland Basic checks are back! Employers needing Basic DS checks for employee screening can submit again.

As of 9th June, Disclosure Scotland are now accepting routine Basic applications. All Basic applications can be submitted online. The standard fee of £25 applies.

Disclosure Scotland will continue to prioritise checks for workers in Coronavirus (COVID-19) response sectors. Fees will continue to be waived for these priority workers until midnight on Friday 25 December 2020.

DBS update

8th July 2020

The DBS have made temporary changes to their acceptable ID documents to make it easier for people to start in their key worker roles. The DBS have announced that will temporarily allow expired passports that are within 6 months of the expiry date for DBS identity checking purposes. The applicant must be in possession of their expired passport to use it as an identity document.

Disclosure Scotland have developed a key policy

24th July 2020

It is now law and will soon be implemented. The Disclosure Bill received Royal Assent last Tuesday and is now an Act.

The Bill aims to:

- mandate that anyone wanting to work with children, young people, or vulnerable adults in Scotland are PVG Scheme members.

- simplify the process for disclosing criminal history information.

- change whether and how certain offences are disclosed.

Read more here.

Right to Work

4th August 2020

UK GOV have recently released updated advice for UK visa applicants and temporary UK residents. You can view it here.

Referencing

7th August 2020

There are some sectors in which there are currently barriers with obtaining quality references. We recently carried out a survey with employers which indicated that 81% of previous employers only provide dates of employment in references. Our intention is to improve referencing processes cross-sector.

Cifas Fraudscape

10th August 2020

We are delighted to continue to collaborate with our partners over at Cifas to protect UK businesses from employee fraud. You can take a look at the report here to read about how we, and Cifas are supporting each other to tackle this growing problem.

Disclosure Scotland

24th August 2020

Important changes on what appears on criminal record checks for employers. The reforms will, from 30 November, reduce the length of time that many convictions need to be disclosed by most job applicants. You can read more here.

Digital Identity

1st September 2020

Tired of recruitment being slowed down by paper documents? Candidates fed up of submitting their ID/POA docs?

The start of digital identity for recruitment (and other sectors) is here. It marks the gradual end of paper documents needed to get a job.

Today UK GOV has published their formal response to last year's digital identity consultation indicating their commitment to establishing a legal framework to enable online verification. This is firm commitment from UK GOV to drive digital identity usage to increase productivity and boost the economy.

Our director, Keith Rosser, will be championing digital identity for recruitment at the next session as we fundamentally believe it will improve safeguarding, reduce time to hire, and enable the UK to have a truly agile labour market.

DBS

10th September 2020

The DBS have released their 5-year strategy which details their ambitions as an organisation and focuses on three key elements: their Profile, their People and Quality. The work that the DBS do provides significant protection to the public and the delivery of this strategy will enable them to develop as an organisation, improve the services they provide, and support the contributions they make within the safeguarding community. You can read more here

Cifas Annual Conference

21st September 2020

We are delighted to continue to collaborate with our partners over at Cifas to protect UK businesses from employee fraud. We discussed how our new way of working and the gig economy impacts insider fraud, document checking, and employee screening. You can take a look at the report here to read about how we, and Cifas are supporting each other to tackle this growing problem.

Modern Slavery Act

24th September 2020

Reed Screening inputted into a review of the Modern Slavery Act – proposed changes have been announced here.

APPG Inquiry

27th September 2020

We have been leading on the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) Inquiry – Review of Employee Screening - for UK GOV on how to improve screening and Digital Identity.

We attended the APPG on Digital Identity to hear from a number of key stakeholders, including Matt Warman MP, who answered critical questions around how the public and private sectors can work together to move forwards with the Digital Identity agenda.

Being at the forefront of important projects like these enables us to continue to lobby UK GOV to keep a lot of the changes to right to work checks, that we influenced during the crisis. Additionally, Reed Screening are in a great position to keep stakeholders informed of upcoming events and milestones, being the first to implement changes.

Right to Work

30th September 2020

The 1st January 2021 will see the end of free-movement and the UK will introduce a points-based immigration system & you can read more here.

As restrictions tighten, we wanted to give an update & advise on what you need to know about employee screening.

9th October 2020

Right to Work - continues to be remote with the Home Office reverting back to face to face with 2 weeks notice. Our Director, Keith Rosser, is delighted to have been asked to write the introduction for the APPG Inquiry Report for Ministers on making right to work checks online permanently. This is backed by several MP’s. For more information on what this would mean for your business, you can contact corinne.peart@reed.com.

DBS Checks – Free COVID checks remain in place and we continue to champion digital identity checks moving forward. Reed Screening Chair the CRTB, and the new website can be found here.

References - A project is underway with Skills for Care to identify best practice around verification, validation, volume, and templating. The aim is to improve and standardise referencing in future where possible.

COVID Right to Work Checks

13th October 2020

Employers across the UK have been completing "COVID adjusted" right to work checks since March, which essentially means completing right to work checks online opposed to face to face.

The Home Office maintain that come the end of the "COVID period" UK employers will need to complete face to face checks of all existing staff hired during COVID.

Whilst no exact numbers exist, this is thought to be in excess of 250,000 workers already. What's more, the "COVID period" could run for another 6 months yet resulting in a huge obligation on employers.

The next session of the Digital Identity APPG discussing digital hiring will be October 23rd.

We continue to lobby to keep Right to Work check remote following the Coronavirus pandemic

29th October 2020

Reed Screening have been leading on the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) Inquiry – Review of Employee Screening for UK GOV on how to improve screening. We have now sought views of businesses and continue to lobby UK GOV to keep a lot of the changes we have influenced during the crisis. The APPG Inquiry Report for Ministers is ready to issue and will be taken to the virtual Parliamentary roundtable in November.

PVG Checks

4th November 2020

For the first time Disclosure Scotland are able to offer customers a fully digital channel to get PVG checks done. Customers who are invited to adopt PVG Online will be contacted by Disclosure Scotland.

COVID-19 fuelling recruitment fraud and scams

17th November 2020

Our Director, Keith Rosser,  appears on Sky News discussing how COVID-19 has fuelled recruitment fraud and scams ruining the lives of many job seekers. He has called on UK GOV and industry to do more to tackle this problem.

Fake jobs, illegal recruitment practices, and fraud widely exist on well-known recruitment platforms, social networking sites, and online portals.

You can report any concerns to SAFERjobs and get free help when applying for work.

Filtering rules for Standard and Enhanced DBS checks are changing from 28th November

19th November 2020

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) will no longer disclose youth reprimands, youth warnings, or youth cautions. They will also no longer automatically disclose all convictions where an individual has more than one conviction – instead, each individual conviction will be assessed against the appropriate rules.

All unspent convictions and conditional cautions must be disclosed and do not become protected until they are spent.

If you attended our recent webinar with Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and Dominic Headley FRSA, you will already have information on this as filtering was covered as part of our session.

You can find out more information here: https://lnkd.in/daQmQ6J

Is getting useful references a challenge?

1st December 2020

We are delighted to be on the project board working with Skills for Care, Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS), Dominic Headley & Associates, and VBA Consulting looking at referencing in the care sector.

Announced today on GOV.UK, the project aims to improve information, advice, and standardisation of approach for referencing in the care sector.

There is a short survey available for you to complete here along with information on how to register your interest in attending a virtual workshop on this important topic.

New Data Sharing Code of Practice published by the ICO

18th December 2020

Today the ICO has published their new Data Sharing Code of Practice. Together with a suite of new resources, the code provides practical advice to businesses and organisations on how to share data responsibly. You can find out more on their data sharing hub here

Is employment referencing broken in healthcare?

13th January 2021

A call for better regulation in the sector. Our mission is to put the value back into referencing.

Our first joint project workshop with Skills for Care, Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS), Dominic Headley and VBA Consulting on Effective References and conduct information was a fascinating session today.

The sector badly needs standardisation, best practice, and guidance to help employers get more from the referencing process.

Some excellent discussions around future regulation, innovation and technology, the pressures and barriers, the role of recruitment agencies, and the opportunity to improve referencing in the sector.

The next consultation workshop is Thursday 21st January. 12:30-3. To attend please contact corinne.peart@reed.com

Why do 60% of references never get returned?

21st January 2021

We enjoyed speaking at the second session of the joint project on improving references today.

The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS), Skills for Care, Dominic Headley & Associates, and VBA Consulting project is on a mission to put the value back into referencing.

An enlightening session on the barriers, pitfalls, and problems with referencing covering everything from GDPR and litigation to challenges with technology and lack of consistency.

The Department of Health and Social Care backed project is looking at:

- Standardisation

- Best practice

- Frameworks

- Regulatory action

Reed Screening Partner Integration with LinkedIn Talent Hub

8th February 2021

We are delighted to be a partner integration with LinkedIn Talent Hub which let's you source, manage, and hire all in one place.

From job boards to human resource information systems and more, LinkedIn's ATS brings hiring tools into one integrated workflow.

It seamlessly integrates with our systems where you can gain the benefits of our market leading time to screen driven by our 24/7 UK onshore team. We protect your business and provide a seamless candidate screening experience, leaving you to get back to what you do best.

Whatever your business size, our years of experience and team of experts can help you to hire the right people for your business - every single time.

You can take a look here

Ever wanted faster onboarding/hiring/screening checks?

22nd February 2021

Tomorrow the new Better Hiring Institute has its first meeting with UK GOV.

The Institute has been created to work with industry and government to streamline hiring whilst at the same time ensuring safeguarding.

It will be addressing subjects such as digital identity, education credentialing, referencing, social media screening, digital right to work checks, future of police checks, portability, technology, but always with safeguarding and job seekers front of mind.

Full details will be announced shortly as we seek to revolutionise the UK labour market for all.

We have been delighted to be early adopters of the Disclosure Scotland Online PVG System.

2nd March 2021

If you don't already use it, you should.

Here's why...

The speed of recruitment is key in assisting economic recovery in Scotland. We’ve found Disclosure Scotland’s PVG Online system revolutionary in delivering safeguarding quickly, allowing us to assist those looking for work and employers seamlessly and effectively. By conducting the checks remotely businesses receive the same high standard of clearance, but time to hire is cut significantly, saving time and money.

Rule changes to make it easier to recruit health and care staff

4th March 2021

Foreign workers in key health and care roles will have a greater opportunity to come to the UK following changes announces to the Immigration Rules.

Pharmacists, laboratory technicians, senior care workers and nursing assistants are among roles that have been added to the Shortage Occupation List, which gives people in these roles an advantage in obtaining a skilled worker visa. You can read more here.

Government launches modern slavery statement registry

11th March 2021

Modern slavery is a serious crime being committed across the UK in which victims are exploited for someone else’s gain.

The Home Office has launched a modern slavery statement registry online, a platform for organisations to share steps they have taken to tackle & prevent modern slavery.

It will enhance transparency & accessibility, by bringing modern slavery statements together in one place & will make it easier to find & compare them. 

It will allow users to search for statements and scrutinise the action organisations are taking to identify and address modern slavery risks in their operations and supply chains. 

REED is committed to ensuring that there is no modern slavery or human trafficking in its supply chains or in any part of its business. Our Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Policy reflects this commitment to acting ethically and with integrity in all business relationships. It also reflects the commitment to implementing and enforcing effective systems and controls to ensure slavery and human trafficking is not taking place anywhere in REED’s supply chains.

Organisations are strongly encouraged to submit their most recently published statement, find more information here

Launch of the UK Identity Fraud Advisory (UKIFA) to tackle the rise in recruitment fraud documents.

18th March 2021

Fake identity documents in recruitment are on the rise and impact employers more now than ever. The impact of COVID on the labour market has exposed organisations to an increase in document fraud, resulting in heightened risk to business.

In response, with UK Government, the UK Identity Fraud Advisory (UKIFA) has been launched to support businesses and work seekers.

Visit the website to find out everything you need to know about UKIFA, the UK’s first free resource to help tackle this problem and support business.

UKIFA - UK Identity Fraud Advisory

The UK’s leading source of events and information on employee screening!

30th March 2021

Take a look at our events page where you’ll be able to see our thought leadership events which are tailored to give industry leading insights.

Our webinars are always free, and are the place to go to hear from key speakers on critically important topics throughout 2021, such as:

Innovation in Employee Screening

Police Checks 2021

Post-Brexit Fundamentals

The Importance of Customer Experience

Introducing the Better Hiring Institute

UK GOV’s Digital Identity Project

Creation of The Better Hiring Institute, in collaboration with UK Government

15th April 2021

The Better Hiring Institute is an independent body designed to ensure safe recruitment across all sectors.


Do you long for a change in the hiring process in your industry? Do you face inefficiencies in the hiring process that you can see an opportunity to change?

Look no further, as The Better Hiring Institute will:

- Provide a platform to bring about change to hiring within your industry

- Improve productivity and efficiency as well as reducing the time and cost of hiring

- Ensure that you stay up to date with the latest developments and trends in hiring

- Take your expertise and help to develop standards and promote safer recruitment and safeguarding

- Help to influence UK Government policy

- Be the place to go to see Industry best practice, standards, and frameworks and provide information and advice.

You can visit the BHI website here

Home Office announce that physical document verification is to be reinstated for UK employers.

20th April 2021

The Home Office have announced that from May 17th, physical document verification is to be reinstated for UK employers.

Although on a positive the 8 week "retrospective check rule" has been abolished for candidates hired between April 20 and April 21 , which means they do not need to be re-checked.

But this is a huge blow and we see a step backward in hiring, which will cause challenges to recruitment, delays in hiring and a slow down for business, amongst many others.

Our Director, Keith Rosser is working hard to lobby to Home Office and bring awareness of the negative impact that this will have on the UK labour market. You can read more here

UPDATE: Employer right to work physical checks delayed to 21st June

12th May 2021

A victory for UK business or simply delaying the inevitable?

Following a lot of pressure from both outside and within government the Home Office have announced a delay to physical right to work checks from 17 May to 21 June.

But is this really a victory for employers or an easy way out for Home Office?

Does it fix:
- job mobility and opportunity for work seekers;
- flexible working for employees (i.e. how do I move job working from my new home in Cornwall?)
- removing those shielding and/or with COVID anxiety from the labour market;
- discrimination towards UK nationals (who can't be hired as quickly and efficiently as non UK nationals);
- heightened fraud risk with documents being posted around the UK;
- illegal working - is the human eye in Costa Coffee better than technology at spotting fakes?

BREAKING: House of Lords debate on digital right to work checks

18th May 2021

Our Director, Keith Rosser, was pleased to support members in the debate with the Minister of State for the Home Office.

Employers estimate that there has been a 75% reduction in costs to check identity through digital channels from the original in-person and paper-based methods, says Keith, who submitted a question to the Lords last week to push the issue of retaining digital checks permanently further. 

Other benefits of digital checks include less vulnerability to fraud and the potential to integrate with other information systems, which will further increase security performance.

He has spoken to the Recruiter and you can read the full article here

The Better Hiring Institute is calling on the creation of a framework for social media screening

3rd June 2021

The content you post online can have huge repercussions for your professional life.

We’ve all seen brand damaging social media posts. So for employers, social media screening can be a valuable tool to make calculated recruitment decisions, and to ensure the sanctity of their brand.

With social media now being an unavoidable part of daily life, it’s easy to gain a sense of a person by looking at their social media platforms. Because of this, many UK employers now carry out social media screening on their potential candidates with as many as a third apparently rejecting a candidate based on their Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn profiles.

In the same way making decisions about previous conviction information must be done in a careful and considered way, so should any decisions based on social media checks.

The Better Hiring Institute is calling on the creation of a formal framework to help UK employers when making decisions based on candidate’s social media profile.

If you are employers undertaking social media checks, or a company providing social media checks then get in touch, or find out more about The Better Hiring Institute campaign here

5 Days Until the Staffing Crisis Explodes?

9th June 2021

Today's audience with Lord Holmes saw our Director, Keith Rosser, provide the opening address on a fascinating discussion.

The event gave an opportunity for over 50 employers to express concerns with the plan to return to physical right to work checks on 21st June.

The key concerns covered included:
- non-UK nationals can be hired remotely, UK nationals can’t
- fewer job opportunities for people
- risk in fraud or covid-cases as people forced to travel or post documents

A report of these concerns will be prepared for Ministers and MPs

BREAKING NEWS: Return of physical right-to-work checks postponed!

18th June 2021

The Home Office are pushing back the reintroduction of physical right-to-work checks until 1st September 2021.

Although still a temporary adjustment and not a yet a permanent solution, this is a good outcome.

So thank you to ALL who attended who attended the session with Lord Holmes on 9th June, it demonstrates that the lobbying of industry bodies is being heard.

However, our work is not yet done, a long term strategic solution is still needed.

Employers converge with MP's to voice why Digital Right to Work checks are vital.

21st June 2021

Chaired by Dean Russell MP, Monday's audience saw brilliant speakers Keith Rosser, Darren Cornish and Cassie Watson providing their voice in the fascinating discussion on employer right to work checks.

Over 50 employers joined to express the need for a digital solution, and the benefits of digital right to work checks to UK employers and work seekers.

Notable topics included:

- Employers want a simple solution to securely check RTW documents
- A digital solution will enable employers to broaden geographic areas in hiring
- Non-UK nationals can be hired remotely, UK nationals can’t
- Physical checks pose a threat to the front line workers
- A need to embrace technology and prevent cost and risk to businesses
- Digital checks have a potential to prevent fraud as they more secure than physical

Thanks to everyone who attended to make the case to MPs, and we continue to lobby for a fair and digital right to work system.

Building back better with digital hiring

22nd June 2021

A brilliant piece by Lord Holmes on building back better with digital hiring, highlighting why the Government needs to embrace a digital right to work solution.


"Keith Rosser, Director of Reed Recruitment, argues that in person checks do nothing to reduce the risk of employment fraud.  The reversion to paper based documents will, therefore, put barriers in the path of legitimate job applications by UK nationals without reducing employment fraud. A return to in person, paper based checks will increase costs and cause delays."

The blog is available to read here.