A Background Screening Program Exceeding Expectations: CarolinaEast Health System

After experiencing a decline in quality and lack of communication from another background screening provider, CarolinaEast Health System partnered with Corporate Screening. Together, the team built a screening program that exceeds expectations.

As Vice President of Human Resources for the leading health system in coastal North Carolina, Lesley Hunter recognizes the value of a quality employee—and how it translates into successful patient care. In her 18 years at CarolinaEast Health System, Lesley and her team have cultivated a workplace of compassion, transparency and engagement. Patient satisfaction scores are strong. Employee engagement is at an all-time high. Recent surveys place CarolinaEast within the 90th percentile of all organizations measured by their independent, third-party researcher. Forging the connection between patient success and employee engagement is something Lesley takes seriously. “It’s our responsibility to ensure we are bringing in high quality staff into our culture,” Lesley says. “That’s really important.”
And it’s something Lesley and her team must get right from the very start.

Concerns Arise with the Existing Background Screening Program

Lori King is the Executive Secretary at CarolinaEast. She works closely with recruitment and is tasked with managing the background screening process. Lori was happy with her original vendor, until they were bought out by a global competitor. “When ownership changed, we noticed a change overnight,” Lori says. So, they switched vendors—and it happened again. That vendor was also bought out by the same global firm. From the beginning, it was clear CarolinaEast and their inherited vendor didn’t see eye to eye. “There was no attention to detail. No communication when processes changed. Suddenly, they started doing something differently without involving us in the process,” Lesley says.

In their original process, Lori was to personally review candidate motor vehicle records (MVRs) before passing results on to a recruiter. Candidates with clear results could proceed, but records with hits needed to be researched further. “We had a definite process. I had to review certain things. And they would bypass me,” Lori says. Once a ‘hit’ was sent directly to the recruiter, it was the last straw. One mistake could’ve been devastating. “What if we had a driver who was in an accident and hurt someone? Or what if [a driver] had killed someone and we never looked at it?” Lori says. “It could put us in a horrible position.”

When Lori and Lesley tried to resolve these concerns with their vendor, they discovered even more inconsistencies in their program. Their vendor was providing them with the minimum information based on laws from another state. “They provided the least amount of information and they just did that for everybody. They didn’t consider we are in North Carolina. We have our own rules and regulations,” Lesley says. “We had no comfort level that our screenings were happening to the level in which we were promised, or that we need,” Lori adds. “That was frightening and made us uneasy.” “At that point, we had zero faith in their process, and they lost us. There was no fixing that.” Lesley says.

The Next Chapter with a New Background Screening Program

Beyond the point of resolution with their vendor, Lesley and Lori began to explore new options. Quality, price, service and an applicant tracking system integration with Healthcare Source were qualities Lesley and Lori considered. But it was a conversation that set Corporate Screening apart. After account representative Rob Stewart and VP of Sales Matt Jaye presented to CarolinaEast, Corporate Screening quickly emerged as a leader. “Matt and Rob both came to the table to have a conversation. They understood the healthcare industry and that we aren’t a Fortune 500 company.” Lesley says. “They were aware of our pain points,” Lori adds. “For [them] to look me in the eye and have a serious conversation, it made all the difference,” Lesley says.

“We have an obligation to hire the best people for our organization and we absolutely value having good information and a thorough background check. With [CorporateScreening] we always get a quality product and they always keep our budget in mind.”
CarolinaEast Health System

That level of collaboration and confidence has continued through the implementation process. From case management to billing— transparency is the name of the game. When there are delays in a case, Lori and her team of recruiters know why. “We get a heads-up,” Lori says. “Our case manager messages us and explains what’s happening. There is constant communication.” That transparency empowers Lori and her team. “I can see what’s been done and what hasn’t—then make a judgment call, make an offer and keep the process moving,” Lori says. “It helps with efficiency.” In addition, the messaging tool within the CS EASE platform keeps a comprehensive record of all communication related to a case.

[With our previous vendor], we would have to use a separate email to message a representative and our communication would get lost in the shuffle,” Lori says. “Now, the information stays where it is supposed to be. It’s great.” With transparency, efficiency and quality, Lesley and Lori have a renewed sense of assurance. “The breadth and the depth of the report leads me to have confidence in the hires we make.” Lori says. “It’s important to know the quality is there.” “We have an obligation to hire the best people for our organization and we absolutely value having good information and a thorough background check,” Lesley says. “[With Corporate Screening] we always get a quality product and they always keep our budget in mind.” And when issues arise, they know where to turn.

“Corporate Screening brings us good ideas,” Lori says. “We solve problems together. At the end of the day, we collaborate.” “[I feel like we] are a valued client, and that you guys are willing to take time to explain, to problem-solve, to analyze the issue and address it head-on,” Lesley says. “I don’t know how many clients you have. But I usually feel like we’re number one.”

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About CarolinaEast Health System

Based in New Bern, CarolinaEast Health System is a multi-facility healthcare provider serving coastal North Carolina. In addition to the 350-bed CarolinaEast Medical Center acute care inpatient hospital, CarolinaEast provides best-in-class orthopedic, cardiac and cancer care. Care is delivered through 19 physician practices, a free-standing diagnostic/surgery center and a home health service.

With recognition from organizations like the Horizon Health, Blue Cross Blue Shield and Healthgrades, CarolinaEast Health System prides itself on compassionate care, patient satisfaction and employee engagement. CarolinaEast is the only acute care organization in the state to earn continuously five stars from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). It is the first hospital in the state and 11th in the nation to receive the Cardiovascular Center of Excellence award from the American Heart Association.

As a thriving health system, CarolinaEast continues to expand service offerings and facilities. The system is on the verge of completing a $60 million renovation to its main campus, which includes an all new emergency department and enhanced women’s health and maternity center.

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