Review of 2021 in the Background Screening industry
Here's Verifile's 2021 review...
2021 was another strange year for us all and I can't be the only person still wondering what "normal" even looks like.
But before I share my review what's been happening here at Verifile, I want to ensure you are all aware of the news that UK employers have been waiting for. I am delighted that we can all look ahead to the era of Digital ID Validation!
UK GOV have announced that digital identity checks can be used for Right to Work checks from April 2022. Candidates will be able to upload images of their personal documents, instead of having originals checked by prospective employers. This is great news which will save significant resource, reduce onboarding time, and mitigate risk for employers.
Better still, the same identification technology can be used to support DBS checks too! We will of course be sharing more detail over the coming months but rest assured that we have been working hard behind the scenes in preparation.
As I sit here thinking about 2021, what stands out is that it's been a year of both significant growth, and significant change. Few would have predicted the incredible bounce back after the first year of Covid-19. Fewer still foresaw the 'great resignation' and the battle for recruitment and retention.
In response to unprecedented demand for our services, we've been recruiting non-stop for 18 months. Headcount at Verifile is already up by two thirds compared to pre-pandemic levels and with no plans to slow down. In September we welcomed our new Chief People Officer, Fiona Buchanan, to the board. Fiona has already set about making changes to make Verifile an even better place to work for our rapidly growing team! A new Chief Technology Officer is also due to join us early March and we have big plans for our platform and product – more on these will be shared in due course.
2021 was without doubt our most challenging year to date. Our Operations teams have been working relentlessly to deliver the services you rely on. Highlights include:
- 41% increase in number of candidates screened
- 40% increase in number of checks completed
- 95% of verifications closed successfully
- 25% of checks are ordered through our API (If you are interested to learn how you can access our checks via your own platform, we’d love to help you!)
- 60% of checks were completed fully by our automated technology without any manual intervention
- DBS times consistently averaging between 3 and 7 days
- We checked candidates in 155 countries
The highlight from 2021 that we are most proud of is our verification success rate. Only 5% of all the employment references, qualifications, and memberships we checked were unable to be verified at source. That’s an incredible accomplishment considering all the disruption experienced by all third-party respondents throughout the year!
This aspect of our service is truly what continues to set Verifile apart and provide unparalleled value. And while this approach may take longer in some cases, we maintain that if a job is worth doing, it’s worth doing properly.
When looking at all the candidates we checked in 2021, we also found that:
- Over half of all candidates have had discrepancies on their CV (55%)
- Almost 1 in 4 candidates had a significant discrepancy with a red traffic light (23%)
- 1 in 10 employments we checked had a significant discrepancy with a red traffic light (10%)
- 1 in 10 qualifications we checked had a significant discrepancy with a red traffic light (10%)
- 1 in 8 memberships we checked had a significant discrepancy with a red traffic light (12%)
Now looking ahead, what’s in store for 2022 here at Verifile?
- Digital ID Verification bringing about big changes to DBS and Right to Work checks
- The launch of an alternative candidate-centric ordering process
- Further data source integrations, and more products and services
- Exciting news about our international expansion
- New leaders joining our Board and senior management team
- Adoption of Customer Success philosophy over Account Management - a major investment in how we support you
- Continued investment in recruitment and in our colleagues’ well-being and personal development.
Our Business Support Team is creating initiatives, and enabling the return to office-based working for staff wishing to do so. Kelly, our Vendor & Accreditation Officer, is busy steering us through various audits as we continue to renew our 7 certifications, and we’re working towards more certifications for 2022.
In summary, I hope you enter the new year as full of optimism and excitement as we do here at Verifile. My team and I look forward to keeping in touch with you and enjoying more shared success in 2022.
Eyal Ben Cohen
Verifile Founder and CEO