3 Tips For Conducting Background Checks On Applicants

Posted on: 4 May 2017

Background checks are typically an important part of the hiring process, but with the time and costs associated with thorough investigations, you want to be sure you are not skimping on checks while performing them in a cost-effective manner. There are ways to minimize your expenditure, while gaining relevant information on prospective employees.

Limit When You Perform Checks

Many states require potential employers to eliminate questions about certain arrests and/or convictions on their applications. The reason is it presumed that people with marks on their criminal record may have a fair shot at being considered for a position if their arrests or convictions are only addressed later in the hiring process. Regardless of whether your state requires you to eliminate these questions on applications, there is much to be gained by delaying background checks. It is more cost-effective to limit your background checks to prospective employees that are you are seriously considering hiring. Additionally, if you require applicants to pay for their own background checks, it reduces the financial burden on them since they may be applying for numerous jobs that require them to pay background investigation costs.

Do Further Investigations

When you limit your background checks to a few candidates, you can feel your money is better invested in a thorough background investigation. Background checks typically cost more depending on how far you go back into an applicant's background and what type of information you are investigating. Some employers may only screen applicants five to 10 years before their application date, because it is less expensive. When you narrow the number of background checks you perform, you might choose to investigate an applicant's entire background, even if the process is more time consuming.

Additionally, discrepancies between states and jurisdictions can cause hurdles with background investigations. For example, in one jurisdiction, a prospective employee may have been convicted or pleaded guilty of a sex crime, but avoided registering as a sex offender. If your background check is not sufficient, you may only see the person is not considered a sex offender and are eligible for hiring.

Update Applicants On Their Results

As a courtesy, you should inform applicants of their background check results, especially if they are denied employment due to an arrest or conviction. Just as problems with identity theft can ruin an applicant's credit report, identity theft can give an applicant an unknown arrest record. Also, some applicants may have arrests and/or convictions that were supposed to be sealed or otherwise removed off their record, but were not. If there are any inconsistencies with an applicant's background check, they will want to address these problems with state and local authorities. Without knowing, they may simply assume they are having a difficult time finding a job for other reasons.

Background checks can be time-consuming and expensive for employers and prospective employees. Doing thorough investigations on a select group of people can keep your costs to minimum. Talk to a screening provider online for more information.