10 Things You Didn’t Know about Checkr CEO Daniel Yanisse

Daniel Yanisse is the CEO of Checkr. For those who are unfamiliar, Checkr is a corporation that specializes in providing its clients with background checking services. However, it claims to be better than its competitors thanks to its use of machine learning as well as other high-tech tools to improve its revenue-earning operations.

1. Studied Microengineering

Yanisse received an education in microengineering. For those who are unfamiliar, microengineering is focused on producing machines as well as other structures on a very small level, so much so that the term is sometimes used in the context of nanotech. This is a very new field, which possesses enormous potential in medicine as well as a wide range of other fields.

2. Spent Some Time in Research

It is interesting to note that Yanisse spent some time in research. For example, he was involved in robotics research for a time. Likewise, he was involved in clinical research for a time. However, it wasn’t too long before Yanisse entered the field of software engineering where he remained until he decided to use his expertise and experience to become an entrepreneur.

3. Saw a Problem

Like a lot of entrepreneurs, Yanisse saw a problem before stepping up to provide a solution for said problem. Basically, background checks are a critical part of the hiring process, so much so that they can be considered necessary for a wide range of businesses in a wide range of industries. However, background checks can be both very unpleasant and very time-consuming, meaning that there is much room for improvement on the part of the parties that provide such services.

4. Concerned About Transparency

In particular, Yanisse was concerned about transparency in background checks. In part, this means transparency for consumers regarding the information contained in their reports as well as the rights that protect the information contained in their reports. However, this means transparency for businesses regarding the information, the value of the information, and their responsibilities for the information as well.

5. Didn’t See the Problem As Being Inherent to the Process

There are some processes that can’t help but be time-consuming. However, Yanisse didn’t believe background checks to be one of these processes. Instead, he thought that the problem of background checks should be blamed on suboptimal decision-making on the part of relevant decision-makers, meaning that the process could be improved. In the end, Yanisse settled on a combination of mechanical speed with human oversight to serve as his solution, which is to say, he used automation to speed up the process while still retaining human experts to make sure that the automation produced correct information. Something that is still very much necessary because machines are still in their infancy when it comes to such matters.

6. Sees Opportunities in the Changing Nature of Work

Yanisse sees opportunities in the changing nature of work. For those who are unfamiliar, more and more people are working on a more flexible schedule than the standard 9-to-5 routine. However, a lot of these people are still in industries that need background checks to be carried out, meaning that there is more and more demand for such services at a faster and faster rate. As such, there is an opening for a corporation that specializes in background checks to step in to meet this need. Something that could bode very well for Checkr in the future indeed.

7. Had Some Tight Moments with the Startup

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Yanisse has had some tight moments with his start-up. For instance, there was a point in time when Checkr used Heroku web services. Unfortunately for it, the credit card that it used to pay for said web services was declined, with the result that its service would have gone down if it didn’t come up with a replacement. In the end, it was one of Checkr’s own engineers who volunteered the use of his credit card to cover the cost in that moment, with the result that said individual has a permanent spot in the corporation’s hall of fame.

8. Believes that a Conviction Shouldn’t Be a Lifetime Bar to Employment

Yanisse is of the opinion that a conviction shouldn’t be a lifetime bar to employment. In considerable part, this is because making it difficult for ex-convicts to find employment increases their chances of winding back in prison, thus perpetuating a very ugly cycle to the detriment of not just them but also everyone around them. Instead, Yanisse believes in giving businesses more information that can be used to make more informed decisions about potential employees with previous convictions. As a result, businesses can block ex-convicts from positions that their previous convictions make them a bad fit for while still hiring them on for other positions with other priorities.

9. Believes that Fair Hiring Is Sound Business Practice

On a related note, Yanisse sees fair hiring as sound business practice. In his opinion, it makes for a more engaged, a more loyal, and a more diverse workforce. Some people might wonder why the last receives mention in the same list as engagement as well as loyalty. However, the fact of the matter is that a more diverse workface can access more talent than otherwise possible while also possessing a wider range of worldviews that better enable it to engage with a wider range of issues. To support his position, Yanisse made specific mention of ex-convicts being more loyal to the businesses that have hired them than other employees, not least because they have a very keen awareness of just how difficult it is for them to get an employer to take a chance on them.

10. Sees His Parents As Sources of Inspiration

It isn’t uncommon for people to see their parents as sources of inspiration. Yanisse is an excellent example of such individuals. In short, his father was born in Syria, while his mother was born in Romania. The two went to medical school together before leaving communist Romania in preference for France in the 1980s where they met with a serious setback because their degrees weren’t acknowledged by the French system. As a result, Yanisse’s parents had to go to medical school a second time. Considering the obstacles that Yanisse’s parents had to overcome, it is no wonder that he sees them as a source of inspiration when it comes to his own entrepreneurial ambitions.


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