Top 3 Best Practices for Screening New Hires with Background Checks

Background checks are an important part of the recruitment process. Not only do they help employers hire the right people, but also reduce legal risks and resource wastage associated with wrong hires.

Types of Background Checks

Looks and first impressions can be quite deceiving, and background checks help hiring managers uncover any lies perpetrated by job candidates. Depending on your organization’s policies, the position in question, and federal or relevant state laws, you can use the following types of background checks to verify the information provided by a potential employee.

Job History

Recent surveys show that more than 78% of job applicants lie about their past work. This might include changing their job titles, extending their work periods, and exaggerating their job experiences. Unfortunately, many hiring managers tend to overlook this aspect of the background check, leading to under-qualified hires.

To avoid recruiting the wrong person, you must make sure that your candidate provided the correct dates, job titles, and experiences. While verifying information on job history, you should also inquire about other important employee issues, such as their performance and behavior.

Education Verification

Even though education might not be very important for some roles, some technical jobs demand that you conduct a background check on the educational qualifications of a candidate. For example, nobody wants to be treated by a quack or represented by a lawyer who has not passed their bar exams.

Criminal History Check

This is a crucial part of the screening process conducted by nearly every employer. When looking at a candidate’s criminal history, you should consider the type of crime they committed, the time that has elapsed since they were convicted, and whether the offense is relevant to the role that you are hiring for.

Best Practices for Conducting Background Checks

While there is no question about the benefits of conducting background checks on a new hire, companies must exercise caution and follow the law and best practices of the screening process. Failure to do this can lead to screening disparities, creating regulatory compliance and litigation risks. This is why it is better to hire an expert to do background checks on any new employee. Regardless of whether you are using an in-house or an outsourced human resource service, the following are best practices for doing successful background checks.

Create Internal Policies on Screening and Background Checks

You must have clear and fair policies on candidate screening and monitoring, including both pre-employment and post-employment background checks. Pre-employment screening policies must be consistently applied to every new hire, without any discrimination.

You must inform both new and old employees of existing and updated screening policies and procedures, and make documentation on such processes easily accessible. This will create transparency for your company and minimize the risks of litigation.

Ensure Regulatory Compliance

Both federal and state laws have provisions that protect the rights of employees during the screening process. These laws are mainly instituted to protect new employees from discriminatory practices during the hiring process.

The federal laws to consider are The Fair Credit Reporting Act, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, and The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. On the other hand, state laws tend to differ, and how employers conduct and use background checks varies from state to state.

For instance, in Indiana, employers are prohibited from asking new employees about any sealed or restricted criminal records. Job applicants can therefore deny any past criminal history that appears in restricted records.

As an employer, you must familiarize yourself with these regulations and comply with them to avoid any legal problems. For ease of compliance, you must incorporate federal and state regulations into your internal screening policies and processes.

Use Social Security Number Trace

The social security number trace can provide key information on a new employee, including all their previous residential addresses, for the past seven years. You can use these residential details to check for criminal records in the right geographical and county courts of law, thus saving time and avoiding erroneous searches.

Additionally, you can use social security number checks to detect any fraudulent and identity theft concerns. This can be detected through mismatched details, or if the social security number is linked to a death claim. If you preemptively conduct your SSN checks, you can evade the headaches of no-match letters and I-9 compliance.

Ultimately, background checks help employers to hire the right people and reduce turnover rates. However, they must be applied in the right manner following relevant laws.  ASAP Payroll is committed to providing high-quality, low-cost, complete solutions specifically tailored to meet your criminal background search needs. Our system is fast and easy-to-use, allowing for immediate results. Contact us today for more information.

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