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Starting a Business In Fiji

Employment Background Checks In Fiji

The Fijian archipelago consists of more than 300 islands in the South Pacific fostering new business opportunities with well-connected infrastructure and high production capacities. 

The island country recorded positive Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth since 2011 with the latest figure at 4.59 billion US dollars. Fiji’s economy mostly depends on industries like mining, manufacturing, garment-textile, information technology, floriculture, forestry, and agro-processing.  

Exercising background checks in Fiji on potential business partners will help you minimize risk liabilities. Further, pre-employment background screening in Fiji on prospects may add value to the overall recruiting process and prevent companies from possibly damaging financial or public perception.

Employers must exercise enough caution while collecting, storing, and analyzing personal data for employee screening in Fiji. 

What is Employment Background Verification?

Employment background verification is an established process to collect, verify and report information discrepancies declared by prospective hires. Employers and companies often conduct background checks to weed out employees’ or business partners’ risk liability. 

The background screening process is typically carried out with preliminary discussion among parties followed by recording consent of the prospects for gathering and analyzing information from private and public databases.  

Information collected and verified during the employment background check includes employees’ professional data like academic certificates and work experience and personal data like criminal records, financial history, medical records, or social media activities.  

The parties to background checks are usually employers, prospective employees, independent contractors, suppliers, and vendors. Employers may seek help from third-party service providers for conducting background checks.

Benefits of Background Checks in Fiji

Background check is an effective tool to verify the identity of your employees, freelancers, suppliers, or vendors well before entering into a business relationship. 

Here are the most potential benefits of conducting a pre-employment background check in Fiji:

  • Increasing job application standards
  • Data discrepancies related to work experience and academic qualifications are common in most job applications, leading to risk liabilities for employers. 
  • A job posting with a declaration of pre-employment background checks will attract only genuine applicants, thus improving the job application standards in Fiji. 
  • Saving company resources and time
  • Hiring employees is time-consuming and resource-draining, and employers always look to minimize employee turnover. 
  • Hiring the right candidate after background checks in Fiji will bring stability to the team rather than filling the same vacancies repeatedly.
  • Check on employee moonlighting
  • While employee moonlighting is valid and legal, employee background screening is recommended for remote employees in Fiji. 
  • Companies may determine the need for a workplace policy restricting employee moonlighting based on the background search results.  
  • Avoiding risk liabilities
  • Criminal background checks in Fiji on prospective employees can help fulfill the employer’s duty to provide a safe working environment.  
  • Company background checks in Fiji minimize the chances of financial fraud or other legal liabilities when entering into new business partnerships with suppliers or vendors.  

Are Background Checks Legal in Fiji?

Pre-employment background checks in Fiji are legal and valid for prospects, including remote employees. Employers may also conduct background checks in Fiji when partnering with self-employed contractors. 

The most common types of employee background screening in Fiji include: 

  • Identity searches, including address verification, driving license verification, negative social media trace 
  • Search for criminal records history or financial indebtedness history
  • Verification of academic and professional credentials
  • Resume validation & professional reference check
  • Drug screening & medical history validation

Employers in Fiji may conduct background checks through an in-house team of HR experts or outsource the screening process to any third-party service providers. 

Things to Know When Conducting a Background Check in Fiji

The following section reviews applicable restrictions on employer actions while conducting pre-employment background checks in Fiji. 

Criminal record

  • The criminal background checks in Fiji are conducted through the local level courts at the employee’s request. 
  • The report typically contains charge, disposition, and sentencing information for the past seven years. 
  • Employers may seek a Police Clearance Certificate Apostille from foreign prospects, ensuring no criminal past. 

Credit report

  • Employers may seek credit reports from prospects, especially while hiring for managerial positions. 
  • Personal credit check report collects credit scores and credit history records, including bad debts in the public domain.
  • Background searches in Fiji may extend to new business partnerships to get a complete picture of the company’s financial standing, payment histories, legal suits, or bankruptcies.

Employment history

  • Employers may establish & verify an employment timeline including start and end date and previous employer information per the candidates’ CV or resume. 
  • Employment background checks in Fiji may also establish employment gaps over 28 days, even if undisclosed by the candidates.  
  • Employers are usually restricted from contacting the current employer for reference unless candidates give their consent explicitly. 

Education History

  • Employers may conduct a background check in Fiji to physically verify on education/training certificates mentioned in the CV or resume. 
  • Companies are allowed to contact the school or university to confirm the same. 

Social life

  • Employers may conduct HR background checks in Fiji using social media profiles to understand candidates’ world views and social behavior.  
  • However, employers are advised against befriending prospects or their employees with fake profiles only on the pretext of analyzing restricted information on social media for background checks in Fiji. 

Information Essential for a Background Check in Fiji

Employers in Fiji are mandated to secure equal employment opportunities. They are expected to comprehensively prohibit discrimination based on only ethnicity, skin color, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, HIV/AIDS status, marital status, political views, religion, or belief.

Therefore, employers or contracted third-party must ensure that personal data collected during background checks in Fiji are safely stored and processed. 

Employers or contracted third-party service providers may take note of the following essential information for conducting background searches in Fiji:

  • First, middle, and last name
  • Date of birth
  • Last known and current residential address
  • School/University name, city, and year of passing
  • Academic transcripts, degree copy, and release form
  • Professional licenses, certificates
  • Professional work references
  • Social media handles 
  • Criminal record certificates, credit rating scores, and medical records 

Process Involved in Background Checks in Fiji

Fiji’s background check law does not enforce a specialized process; however, employers can take a cue from the following standard global practice: 

Step 1: Ground preparation and consent seeking

  • Employers must notify their prospects about background checks in Fiji. 
  • Subsequently, employers must seek consent for storing and processing prospects’ data.
  • Employers shall partner with third-party who ensure transparency and proper reporting per Fijian background check law. 

Step 2: Gathering and verifying information

  • Soon after, employers may verify the declared work experience, academic credentials, and social media information. 
  • Employers may also seek additional information such as criminal history, financial debt, and medical records. 
  • Employers dealing with new suppliers or vendors may seek relevant information from the commercial registers and verify their presence in public media.

Step 3: Drawing an analysis of the gathered information

  • Using the available information, employers may make the following analysis to conclude employment background screening in Fiji: 
    • Observe appearances and behavioral traits (from social media, criminal records, credit check history, and employment history) to find the right fit for the job role.
    • Red flag any information with data discrepancies, for example, social security contributions coming simultaneously from two or more employers suggests employee moonlighting.
    • Decide on hiring the candidate based on the internal work policy.

Industries and Situations Most Suitable for Background Checks in Fiji

Employers across industries shall conduct background searches in Fiji to assess employee credentials or vendor and supplier’s business credibility to minimize exposure to financial or other risks.  

The most suitable occupations in Fiji for pre-employment background checks include healthcare or childcare specialists, educators/instructors, security guards, or hazardous industries.    

Employers in the food processing, construction, manufacturing, or chemical industries may ask employees to undertake regular medical checks to monitor health risks. 

How Multiplier Helps With Background Checks

Employers may conduct background checks in Fiji provided prospects are not discriminated against based on personal data. Global companies and entrepreneurs must adhere to local rules and regulations while hiring and managing employees or partnering with businesses.

A good understanding of local employment rules can save companies from criminal fraud or financial loss due to bad hiring decisions. SaaS-based solutions like Multiplier ensure 100% compliance for global expansion and avoid misinterpreting Fiji’s background check law.    

At this time, Multiplier may not directly conduct screening and background checks but connect with trusted partners on behalf of employers in Fiji. 

Multiplier is a PEOEOR software platform to help global companies and entrepreneurs draft legally compliant employment contracts and manage employee payrolls at the click of a button in over 150+ countries, including Fiji.

Frequently Asked Questions

There is no law restricting how far background checks can go. Employers in Fiji may conduct background checks on records dated back up to seven years in case of criminal history. The recommended practice for verifying data under different background checks may go back three years, five years, or even 10 years.

Fiji has no dedicated law on data protection regulation that mandates employers to safeguard employee privacy. It is in the interest of employers that they follow Good Business Practices during background checks in Fiji to avoid claims for damages and penalties and reputation damage.

The time required to complete employee screening in Fiji depends on multiple factors like the purpose and type of background check, the residence status of the employee, and the ability of a contracted third party (if applicable). The average turnover for employee screening in Fiji may range between 6-25 business days.

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