Employee Background checks are inescapable for your organisation if you are looking to minimise risks surrounding a bad hire. The concept of an employee background check has become one of the most significant phases in the recruitment process.
The escalating figure of crime scenes and fraudulence incidents is a key justification why organisations take up this step as aside from the rising crime rates, organisations are also becoming hyperaware of their employee turnover rate, employee burnout, employee retention, etc. Employee Background Checks are a highly effective method of ensuring that organisations are recruiting the finest. What are the key concepts of conducting an employee background check and why is it substantial for corporations of all sizes and statures?
Concept of Employee Background Check
In wake of the digital development, it is fair to say that the recruitment process has become quite demanding, and an employee needs to cross numerous phases to in due course reach the finishing point. The Employee Background Check is quite a time-consuming concept as employers strive to have the greatest pick from the numerous candidates who have come up for the recruitment process. After the interview sessions are over, it needs some time to let the employee know about their joining since this is the time when most organisations go through the employee background check procedure. Some companies opt to perform this procedure in-house while some others hire external service providers to conduct a comprehensive check of the employee’s academic, professional, and even social presence. After the employer is gratified with the check, the employee is offered an appointment letter to join them.
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Significance of The Employee Background Check and its Advantages
Organisations carry out such checks due to a myriad of reasons, some of these include:
1. Knowing The Validity of The Resume
Many candidates tend to embellish their experiences on their resume and make use of such methods to obtain their desired job through such falsified recognitions. If a candidate does obtain their role through this method, likely, they will not be able to handle the position well making this a complicated situation for the employee and the employer concurrently. Therefore, it is incredibly valuable to know what the candidate has falsified on their resume. An appropriate and comprehensive verification of the employee’s background can unveil all such truths in front of the employer. After knowing the true details, employers can make a judgment that will be more beneficial for the organisation as well as the employee.
2. Knowing About the Nature of The Candidate
Like the falsified details on the resume, candidates also tend to wear somewhat of the false mask of confidence on their faces while attending the interview. It is tricky to distinguish and judge a person in a conversation of a few minutes. If it is a career profile where the pressure is going to be intense, it is crucial to know whether the candidate can handle such pressure or not. Knowing the authentic behaviour and personality aids in evading bad hires. The experts of the verification check get you an appropriate note about the personality, nature, and behaviour of the candidate to determine whether they can match up to the demands of the needed position.
Knowing Experiences at The Past Offices
Candidates come up with diplomatic answers about their past experiences when a question is thrown at them about said experiences. Many of the experts suggest cracking this during the interview session as the employers must verify the factual scenario at the previous offices. It may turn out that the candidate had a terrible record at the last office, or it may also happen that the employer had fired the candidate from the last job. There can be a few things that can happen. You can of course offer the candidate a chance to clarify, but it is imperative to get the verification done before this.
Knowing Criminal Experience and Legal Support
Having an employee background check is also about having an awareness of any criminal experience a candidate could have potentially had. It can be unsafe for the organisation to hire an employee with such a background and place them amid unharmful employees. It is just as vital to know whether the candidate has legal support or not. If yes, it should be checked whether the candidate has misused the support in the past or not. If the candidate has misused the support in the form of a lawsuit or so in the past, they do the same for your organisation too.
What to include in Employee Background Check?
- History of employment: Verify the reference given by the candidate as it confirms their behavioural and working patterns with previous employers. This way, their overall performance, commitment, and proclivities can be assessed.
- Criminal background: It is essential to determine that the candidate does not have a criminal history. It is inevitable, principally for the profiles related to defence or trust.
- Credit history: Knowing the credit rating of your candidate is also important as this reveals the integrity of the employees. This can be done by completing an employee background check for the credit history.
- Terror Watch List: For the businesses running in countries like the USA, checking the Terror Watch List of their candidates is especially critical. Again, it is a necessity for security positions.
- Checking Social Security: Organisations should check the legitimacy of Social Security Number. Proper background checks of distinct names, aliases, date of birth, history of addresses, etc. This way, it can be found out if the candidate has been living with other names or anything else questionable which is not accessible in criminal records.
- Checking public/court records: This is done to check if the candidate has been or is implicated in any sort of court proceedings or not. This is very significant in picking the right candidate that can offer comprehensive devotion to the job profile you are proposing to extend.
- Reference checks: There are two types of reference Employee Background Checks: personal and employment. Both facilitate in confirming the integrity, reliability, steadiness, and personality of the employee.
- Checking Sex Offender Registry: Sex Offender Registry check must be an integral part of the employee background check as you must not endanger other employees or consumers, especially in roles surrounding children and other susceptible individuals, by hiring a sexual predator.
- Education check: This sort of background check is carried out to determine the authenticity of the various credentials provided by the candidate you are planning to recruit.
- Driving Records: If your candidate is required to drive a company-owned vehicle, then checking driving records and license is essential for you.
- Record of Military Service: You need to pay attention to some key measures while hiring a candidate with a military service record. That is why checking the military service records of your candidates is also important.
- Compensation Record: Checking the candidate’s compensation claims from past employers is also significant before hiring an employee.
Measures to take for Employee Background Checks
Having a proper flow chart of different steps
- Organisations must have a consistent policy for the employee background check, and for this, responsible authorities should know about the different steps they need to follow for background verification. A flow chart of all the steps is often used for this measure as they are easily comprehensible across the board.
Legal Assistance to understand the role of Local Laws in Employee Background Check
- An assortment of confidential data is involved in the background check which is why taking legal Assistance will help avoid many sorts of legal complications.
Opt for FCRA Compliant Employee Background Check
- As FCRA (Fair Credit Reporting Act) determine what you can and cannot do in your employee background check proceedings and govern all the background checks, organisations must ensure that they follow FCRA’s rules and regulation.
In case of any mistake or misunderstanding, allow a candidate to Clear Up that.
- There are instances in which the data an employer has received can be incorrect; it is important to offer the chance to a candidate to rectify those misunderstandings as it determines a prudent and productive practice.
Being aware of the difference b/w Investigative Consumer Reports and Reference Checks
- If you reject a candidate because of the Investigative Consumer Report, the candidate needs to be provided with a copy of that report. However, if the information was obtained via reference check, such as asking past employers, you need not give such details to the candidate.
Academic references Checking
- Academic circles and experience are easily exaggerated and manipulated areas in recruitment and can be problematic and at times difficult to identify. Therefore the prospective employer ought to start their reference check from this point. Undeniably, there is no need whatsoever to employ an applicant who is not honest regarding their academic qualification as they would not be productive and are likely to have ill motives. Consequently, they could be a liability to your organisation. This kind of candidate cannot be trusted at all, and therefore there is no need why the employer should. However, it would be to think such an individual for their interest in your organisation but never should one hire them.
Call current and former supervisors.
- At times, it can prove difficult to extract any information about an applicant due to some legal handles and the fear of being sued for character defamation or even libel where the information which would be given might be negative, especially from either the current or former employers of your prospective candidate. However, it is worthwhile to find out as the data available at your disposal allows for sound and appropriate decisions to be made for the benefit of both the organisation and other members of staff.
Checking one’s network of associates
- Undeniably, for those who have been in the personnel management department, it is most likely that they have a vibrant network of associates, friend colleagues and family members who would be willing to share information about a prospective employee. It is therefore essential and significant to gather information from them. It would not be surprising that one might even get more information from such people.
Browse online sites
- With the use of the internet and using several search engines or numerous social sites, one is likely to find crucial and critical information that would go a long way in facilitating the employer get sufficient data about either the applicant or the organisation that they have worked or claim to have worked for.
- This information might range from positive to negative, thereby allowing the employer to make the right decision. Undoubtedly, the internet is a sure and free source of data that any prospective employer should employ in doing a background check.
In conducting employee background checks, there are some golden rules that one needs to observe to avoid any legal and challenges in executing the duties of their human resources and making the background check most effective and efficient. These do and don’ts include but are not limited to:
- Having a consistent background checks policy and detailing how the policy should be used.
- Getting legal advice on how to conduct background checks under the local legal framework.
- Giving the applicants a chance to clear up any faults or misconstructions appearing on their documentations and during the interview process is inconsistent with your background check.
- Employing the services of background check services compliant with the legal frameworks of your particular region
- Understanding the difference between background checks vis-à-vis investigative consumer reports.
- Avoid making decisions on using the background checks on an applicant-by-applicant basis.
- Avoid the assumption that some parts of the background check process routine
- Avoid making decisions without letting the applicant a chance to respond.
- Avoid assuming that any companies seeking information about an individual are legally compliant.
- Avoid requesting information about the character or personal and private of an individual while verifying the historical employment facts.
Fundamentally, employee background checks are not too viewed superficially as they play an important role in ensuring that neither the employer nor the organisation encounter loss or legal handles in exercising their mandate and role. Consequently, by attracting competency and matching the skills with the tasks, employers ensure that their organisations remain profitable and are sustainably produced and competitive in their respective fields.
Finally, the most critical information that these background checks elicit are vital and are diversified in range and scope depending on the tasks to be performed and are as follows:
Indeed background checks are instrumental in providing information about the particular individual, which would inevitably be vital, especially where the candidate is required to handle or maintain high levels of trust, confidentiality and security. Consequently, this kind and level of reliability would not be forthcoming from a criminal record person.
Social Security Validation
Apart from and the individual being tax compliant, background checks guarantees the legitimacy of the applicant’s social security number. The Social Security Validation facilitates in and discovering of all the names, as well as aliases and any variations thereof, dates of birth in addition to the history addresses associated with the applicant.
This limits the incidents of the employer contracting an individual who has a criminal record or does not have any legal status of seeking and getting employed in that country or region. Further still, it provided information on whether the candidate has ever lived in unrevealed places or under other pseudonyms that could divulge unlawful records that wouldn’t have otherwise been established.
Address History background checks help in tracing prior addresses where the applicant could have resided and facilitated the establishment of where else the applicant could have lived, making it easier in the verification of their true identity and may form the basis of further interview questions as well as getting to know the candidate better.
Terror Watch List
With the prevalent threat of terrorism and the global danger posed by terrorists, a thorough background check is more likely to establish if your potential employee could have been involved in terror acts or whether they are in any country or even states terror watch list. Although this was explicitly imperative for security jobs, it has been deemed necessary in almost every profession due to the changing dynamics and tactics employed by terrorists and other criminal syndicates in the twenty-first century.
Sex Offender and human trafficking Registry Check
With the ever-increasing levels of human trafficking, child pornography, organ harvesting, paedophilia and sexually related abuse globally, it is paramount that for positions dealing with minors, the marginalised and the most vulnerable through background checks are a necessity rather than just an option to ascertain the credibility of the applicant to avert and reduce the prevalence of the vices above.
Necessities for conducting Employee Background Checks
- You need to have your full name, date of birth, and Social Security Number for doing a background check.
- If you want to check credit reports, military records, and school transcripts, you need the candidate’s permission.
- If you hire an outside company to do the background check, you need to take the candidate’s permission.
- If the candidate denies the permission, you will be entitled to take the candidate out of consideration for that job profile.
Are There Any Disadvantages?
One of the major disadvantages that you can see is the wastage of time and money. The organisation invests large sums of money in conducting such investigations, and most of the time, the person turns out to be a genuine one and with the time it takes to conduct these checks, the candidate may think that the organisation is not interested and hence, they may join some other organisation in this period.
Judging a candidate on their background deeds may not always prove to be fruitful either. It may happen that a candidate got trapped in a criminal, offence and in an actual sense, they are a gem of a person. But when you do not know the candidate personally, you will focus on the verification reports and let a genuine person go.
Opting for an employee background check depends on the type of your business and the kind of job profile you are going to hire that candidate. Getting an employee background check has become eminent today because there have been so many instances each day. They are getting the verification done to get the employer the satisfaction that they are selecting a genuine person and will not hamper the reputation and environment of the company.