Wednesday, August 22, 2012


Back in 1999, when I started Rainforest Plumbing & Air, I didn’t realize the impact that a criminal element could have in my business.

Over the years, prior to doing criminal background checks (the Crime Free Advantage), I had a number of problems including serious vehicle accidents, disappearing employees, missing trucks and inventory, embezzlement and the loss of thousands of dollars in stolen equipment.

I believe that dishonesty has a pattern and a history of dishonesty will likely repeat itself.

There came a point at Rainforest Plumbing & Air, when I realized that I needed to create a safer environment for the protection of my business, it’s employees and it’s customers.

I know now that 1 out of 6 individuals has a criminal background.

Today, no one works for me that has felonies, misdemeanors from violence, theft, embezzlement, drugs, sex crimes or crimes against children.

We frequently turn away individuals who apply for employment at Rainforest Plumbing& Air because they have a criminal background. We know now that many of those same individuals, whom we have turned away, are now working for many of our competitors.

CrimShield is the service we use to do criminal background checks. As a client of CrimShield, we have an automatic system of obtaining background checks by live investigators that we can rely on. This is not a simple internet search or online service.

We are proud to say that we CrimShield certify 100% of our staff upon hire and every year thereafter. No one is excluded. That includes myself as well as the Controller, the Managers, the technicians, the bookkeepers, dispatchers, warehousemen and field helpers; EVERYONE! I am very committed to maintaining a 100% crime-free workforce.

Now with Crime Free Circle, we are listed with other like-minded companies who are equally committed to crime-free and Qualified Technicians.

Since Rainforest Plumbing & Air began requiring CrimShield certifications, our insurance rates went down, we have not experienced any drug related incidents and our best employees stay longer. We feel we have better qualified technicians.

When I first considered committing to background checks I was nervous about a painful transition. It turned out not to be as difficult as I thought. Interestingly, the least productive employees were the first to go. I am convinced that there is a correlation!

In the end, I believe that making the decision to do background checks was a leap in organizational maturity and by far has been one of my best business decisions. If you own a service business, you must do criminal background checks. Even though there is a cost of doing them, there is a greater cost of not doing them.