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Lessons Learned/Promising Practices

Lessons Learned

The National Background Check Program began in 2010. Since that time, 26 States have received grants and worked to establish statewide background check programs. Because of the rolling grant application acceptance process, the States entered the program at different times and have varied program maturity. This section presents a collection of lessons learned documents that capture the program development process challenges and methods States have employed to improve their programs and meet the grant requirements.

Promising Practices

A promising practice, as defined by CMS, is a combination of business processes, standards, data, and people (performing their work-related roles) that can serve as a model to other organizations with similar business needs. In the context of the NBCP, a promising practice is an approach being implemented by one or more States that can be objectively measured as beneficial. It is an approach that can be applied, with reasonably few adjustments, by other NBCP-participating States and would be likely to help those States attain similar goals and benefits. In looking at State programs for potential promising practices, CNA focused on the following characteristics and the benefits of each promising practice in these areas:

Efficient processes—Measures could include efficient use of State personnel resources (does the practice save time and money?); elimination of duplicate background checks or other procedures; or lowered cost to applicants, employers, and/or the State;
Effectiveness within the scope of the overall NBCP—Measures could include the number and type of registries automatically checked; the degree to which consistency in a process (e.g., rap back authorization), is maintained and current (i.e., does the practice eliminate guesswork or undue variation?); or the degree of cooperation and integration between the Grantee agency and the State criminal history repository management group;
Applicability to all or many States—Needs to be consistent with approaches being planned or desired by other States, particularly NBCP-participating States. Measures could include whether the practice is replicable to a variety of States, and which types of States would be likely to see similar benefits from the practice; and
Completeness and meeting the broadest spectrum of grant goals—Often an innovative approach to a single process can effectively address multiple business goals. Measures could include whether the practice generates benefits in various aspects of the NBCP implementation as proposed by the State.

Four promising practices are described at the following links:

  1. Employment Tracking and Verification in Illinois
  2. Obtaining Missing Criminal Case Dispositions in Florida
  3. Automated Tracking of Provisional Employment in New Mexico
  4. Stakeholder Engagement Program in Oklahoma