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Employee Background Checks: Dos and Don’ts

August 30, 2016

employee background check CVHiring new talent for your company or organization? Protect the safety and reputation of your workplace by conducting a comprehensive employee background check. According to a recent survey by the Society of Human Resources Management, approximately 69 percent of all U.S. companies conduct background checks on potential job candidates – and for good reason.

An employee background check not only verifies personal information, ensuring a ‘good fit,’ but also a background check can help reduce risk of legal liability. The following are a few dos and don’ts that can help prevent a poor hiring decision which could wreak havoc on your company for years to come.

Be thorough

Companies stand to lose great candidates when they fail to look at the big picture and vet applicants thoroughly. Your background check should go deeper than face value and cover many aspects from employment history and education to license verification and criminal records.

Follow the law

State, federal and job-specific laws dictate how background checks must be conducted.  It is vital to remain compliant with any and all such regulations. In most cases, employers must obtain a signed legal release from the job applicant in order to perform a background check. Applicants must be informed of their rights prior to the check, and provided a copy of the results.

Identify patterns of behavior

Depending on the type of background check performed, employers can glean information about schools attended, credentials obtained, prior criminal convictions, financial history, and other crucial data. By assessing a full report, employers can look for patterns of behavior that indicate whether the applicant is a good fit, rather than drawing a conclusion based on one bad act or mistake revealed on an application form. A background check will identify red flags and negative behavior, but it can also reveal positive attributes as well.

Beware of “free” searches on the Internet

Incorrect and outdated information is rampant on the internet. Companies that perform online searches on job applicants may, in fact, run the risk of viewing personal information that actually violates state and federal laws imposed by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The best source of accurate and legally secured data is from a professional security firm that is licensed and compliant with the law. This process is efficient, yields in-depth results, and helps companies select the most suitable candidate for the job.

Protect your business and learn more about the various kinds of background checks offered by Maryland Security Professionals, serving the entire Mid-Atlantic region.  Arrange a free consultation by calling 410-514-8389.

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