The DBS system was a game-changer when employers were hiring new people shortly after markets started opening up post the Coronavirus pandemic. When the world Governments began tackling the virus at the beginning of the year, they implemented many changes around the country. The UK found it difficult to keep a check on the virus with a large number of people getting sick. Hospitals and healthcare institutions were quite overcrowded and overwhelmed with the amount that they had to handle. They began imposing various restrictions on travel to curtail the spread of the virus, and people were not allowed to leave their homes for a significant amount of time as well. Businesses and companies shut down for almost half a month. Soon, many of them started making changes to the way that they were functioning, and remote working started catching on. Not all companies could leap into remote working, with jobs and industries connected to working in person, put on hold, construction, hospitality and healthcare had no choice but to wait for the situation to get better.
With all the changes taking place, companies and businesses could not keep up, which caused them to begin letting go of their staff. The changes meant that people were not sure about the jobs and were uncertain about the future. With no idea about the future, people began making changes in the way they were spending their money. People were not spending a lot and started becoming selective about their expenses which led to many businesses shutting down. The unemployment rate in the UK began increasing from 3.9% to 5%, after staying stable at the number for the longest time.
The Disclosure and Barring Service, or more popularly known as the DBS check assists employers when they are making decisions and recruiting additions to their teams. These checks are provided throughout the UK and in surrounding areas while also coordinating the adults’ and children’s Barred Lists. The list has information about people and whether they should be allowed to get through any processes or if they have been on either of those lists, which usually deters employers from hiring them and getting them to be a part of regulated activity.
The DBS check conducts a background check on the people applying for it. It goes through their criminal record if they have any so that their employers would be able to make a more informed decision. Additionally, they add the information from the barred list so they would not be working in situations with people of varying ages that could be an issue.
Throughout the pandemic, there were massive changes that took place regarding the way that companies were working. Additionally, these changes took place regarding the DBS check as well. They changed the number of hours that they were spending at the office, which changed with a significant decrease in the number of people coming in to work.
Additionally, they changed the process they were using when processing applications. In the past, people had to provide their applications, along with a few details in person, but now they made changes to the process, allowing people to get through the application process online.
They also added a fast track application process that was put together for people who were working in direct connection to the Coronavirus. With the number of people falling sick in the UK and many other parts of the world, the healthcare department was working overtime and needed all the assistance that they could get. All job applications belonging to any medical professionals, or people assisting with medicine in any way had their DBS applications fast-tracked with their employers receiving their barred list information in 24 hours after submitting their forms. They would process the rest of their details later, but they could continue getting through the interview and begin working in the meantime. The average turnaround time for all levels of DBS checks has not been affected during the pandemic, but some applications were prioritized more than others.
They introduced a new system called the DBS Update Service, which allowed applicants to keep their DBS information ready. It is an annual subscription process that they could get through where they keep their DBS certificate up to date and can submit it to anyone if they ask. Although the DBS certificate is always valid, the information is only relevant until the date that it was applied for. Most employers ask for their DBS information while they are going through the hiring process. Some of them require the most recent certificate, others provide some leeway between three months to a year, with some companies even allowing people signing up to hand in a three-year-old DBS certificate.
There are four types of DBS checks that can be handled depending on the job requirements. In the past, employers would ask for a DBS check, and it could either refer to a basic test or an enhanced test. However, with the introduction of multiple DBS checks, they have to specify the one that they need when they are planning on hiring someone.
Basic DBS check
The most common check used when running a background check on people either working within the company or prospective hires. It brings to light any cautions, reprimands, warnings, and convictions that match the definition, according to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. While the process is the most common, they can apply for it online as well, which makes it a convenient option.
Standard DBS check
The test is a requirement for many higher-level jobs, especially for positions of power and responsibility. For instance, accountancy, working at a bank, and so on. Additionally, these DBS certificates have more information on them, including convictions, cautions, reprimands, and warnings. The test can only be applied depending on the role the person is trying to fill and if it is mentioned in the Police Act 1997, as amended by the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012.
Enhanced DBS check
The check is connected to specific activities associated with the barred children and adult list. Ideally, it would provide information on whether the person could be trusted to be around children or older people. Jobs such as teaching, medical practitioners, judicial appointments, RSPCA officers, and so on would need to provide this information. The enhanced with Barred List checks which is a more sophisticated version of the enhanced DBS check.