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30 Admired Companies To Watch 2020

Cisive: Pre-Employment Screening Solutions for Large Enterprises

Cisive: Pre-Employment Screening Solutions for Large Enterprises

"There are a few more prominent companies in our industry, but none better. We have set the standards in our industry for 40 years."

Compliance-driven human capital management and risk management is extremely important for businesses today. Established forty years ago, New York-based company Cisive is a leader in this space. We connected with the company’s CEO, James Owens, to discuss how the company has sustained its growth in these changing times where newer technologies are emerging fast and compliance requirements are growing. Here are the excerpts from the interview.

Tell us about Cisive’s inception and its growth story.

Founded in 1977 as CARCO Group Inc., we launched our new brand Cisive in 2017 to keep pace with our incredible growth and our clients’ increasingly complex challenges for accurate information and insights to make confident decisions.

Today, Cisive provides comprehensive global background investigations on potential and current employees, vendors, clients, and business partners. We also provide drug testing and fingerprinting services through alliance partners.

At Cisive, we are experts in the specific risks and regulations that apply to the financial services and other highly regulated industries. For over 40 years, we have provided tailored solutions to meet the unique requirements of our enterprise clients. We launched our onboarding suite of technologies in 2007 to cater to enterprise clients’ talent acquisition needs and have been enhancing the platform ever since.

Current market demands are sky-high: how do you stay relevant to your customers?

Cisive maintains the same approach to quality today despite the radical changes in technology that have happened over 40 years and despite other background screening companies coming on the scene and taking shortcuts. There are a few more prominent companies in our industry, but none better. We have set the standards in our industry for 40 years. Companies in our industry use us as the gold standard for comparison. They may sell against us by maximizing things we don’t such as low price or turn-around time performance, but they know where the high mark for quality and applicant experience is set and by whom.

Cisive has worked with several industries of different sizes. Can you tell us of an instance when your solutions helped one of your clients overcome their challenges?

The reduction in information provided in credit reports have been challenging for positions regulated under FINRA. Cisive’s Financial Anomalies Search Technology (FAST) is the perfect solution for banks and other financial services institutions that have to run credit reporting to meet regulatory requirements. FAST provides compliance officers and recruiters a means to match regulated candidates’ self-disclosures regarding public civil records, liens or judgments in compliance with Federal, State, or local laws and regulations.

The efficiency of Cisive’s FAST was on full display when it assisted an organization in solving its compliance issues after the credit reporting reductions. While bringing people on board, the client needed an efficient way of getting missing information in the credit reports. With FAST, Cisive was able to compensate for what was lost in the credit reports and provide all of the information required to vet people and drive the right decisions.

A company’s behavior is as important as its economic performance or the quality of its products. How do you interpret this saying?

I see the quality of a company’s products and a company’s behavior as inextricably linked. It is somewhat in tension with economic performance. Sure, we are in business to make money. But we do not place that first. We focus on the quality of our products and services. Then we have to be creative to figure out ways to make processes more efficient without compromising our core values.

Where do you envision the company in a couple of years from now?

I think the human capital landscape is going to continue to change over the next few years. We will be at the forefront. We are going to continue to develop leading-edge technology as the approach to talent acquisition and management continues to evolve. The nature of background screening is going to undergo a revolution in the next few years due to advances in technologies such as distributed ledgers (blockchain) and this will change the business models for background screening companies. We are seizing on that opportunity and will be out in front!

“I think the human capital landscape is going to continue to change over the next few years. We will be at the forefront.”

Meet the leader

James Owens, CEO

Mr. Owens has played a pivotal role in transforming Cisive into an HR technology-enabled services company with a dual focus on HR onboarding and background screening at industry-leading quality levels. Prior to Cisive, he was a senior architect at Cap Gemini Ernst and Young (CGEY). He has designed and implemented large-scale systems including several web-based applications. He has also served in the US Navy as a Nuclear Submarine Officer on the USS Atlanta (SSN 712) and the USS Albany (SSN 753).


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