MicroPact Blog

Avert Bad Hires and Scandals with Consistent Employee Vetting

State and Local Agencies Need a Configurable Background Investigation System

Morgan Shannon's avatar

By: Morgan Shannon

June 18, 2018 | Justice and Law Enforcement

Too often, the federal security clearance process makes headlines decrying the backlog of pending background investigations (BIs) that can leave key positions unfilled for years. For state and local law enforcement agencies, backlogs aren’t the problem. It’s loose compliance with standards, inconsistent documentation, and poor accountability that compromise the employee vetting process and put bad actors on the payroll — and the street.

You’re Qualified, You’re Hired. Not So Fast

The employee vetting process must always be taken seriously. That’s particularly true in public safety roles, where hiring authorities are often arming people with guns and badges and giving them authority over other people’s lives. Thanks to social media, widespread transparency into domestic violence and other misconduct is now the norm. That means even administrative agencies that previously forwent BIs should require them. 

The process to determine state and local employment suitability nowhere near approaches the rigor of a federal security clearance. Still, a BI process that checks employment, criminal, financial, psychological, and other public records can readily uncover most disqualifiers. To be effective, however, investigators must perform every step for every candidate, every time. Too often, Internal Affairs departments and Offices of Professional Responsibility (OPRs) fail citizens when they improperly vet candidates in the rush to hire more police, parole, and corrections officers — often to meet the “tough on crime” demands of the very citizens who will pay the consequences.

Use What the Feds Use, But Less

It’s hard to safeguard the vetting process without the right technology. Internal Affairs and OPR investigators typically rely on a rudimentary case management system at best, and more often a mix of paper and disconnected databases. At the federal level, background investigators typically use a case management system such as entellitrak that meets all federal PerSec standards. entellitrak is used throughout the federal government to coordinate the efforts of large investigative teams and to manage and adjudicate more than 50,000 BIs and security clearance requests a month. With prescriptive workflows, required interfaces and automatically generated reports, it can shave days, weeks, and even months off an investigation.

State and local agencies may not need all of the bells and whistles used by federal investigators. They may also have fewer policies, standards, and levels of access for which the suitability process addresses.   But the similarities include a need and ability to execute the mission of suitability reviews by enforcing consistency, assigning accountability, and documenting how and why each decision was made according to policy – without locking themselves into a hardcoded system that doesn’t match their needs. entellitrak hits the mark! It provides an affordable, configurable background investigations and suitability case management platform that enables agencies to turn on – and pay for – only the specific features they need. Each step in an investigation is tracked to ensure compliance, and all captured information is properly associated with each case, for easy retrieval and review.

Ask for a Free Prototype

MicroPact’s BI solution provides end-to-end case management for the entire investigative, adjudicative, and continuous evaluation process. Agencies have the flexibility to deploy only what they need, from a single component to an end-to-end solution. Contact us to see if entellitrak is right for your organization.

About the Author

Morgan Shannon was a member of the MicroPact Justice and Law Enforcement team from 2017 - 2019

Tyler Technologies is the largest and most established provider of integrated software and technology services focused on the public sector

Related Solution

Background Investigation

While conducting background investigations, organizations must accurately track all elements to ensure that candidates are properly vetted — and to determine which facilities, systems, and information they can access. entellitrak meets strict reporting and accountability standards, and facilitates the case investigator’s job by managing all data elements and creating a secure personnel folder for each candidate.

Explore this solution

Powered By:

Justice and Law Enforcement

When it comes to public safety and national security technology, to protect and defend means to track, analyze, and share information.

Learn More