Industry insights for job seekers and employers.

Stop Making THESE Mistakes When Conducting a Background Check

As an employer, it can be tempting to accept people on face value and not go through the time and expense of conducting background checks. Or maybe you do conduct background checks, but they are not as thorough as they could be. After all, the candidate you just made a job offer appears to be clean cut, intelligent, and worthy of hiring…right? Stop right here. You are making a big mistake, and perhaps a few mistakes if you think like this.

First of all, people have become really good at developing acceptable personas for themselves, through the use of social profiles and other online technology. They can make themselves look wonderful on the surface. Second of all, people have been known to lie about their career, educational, and personal backgrounds. Tim Sacket, executive vice president of HRU Technical Resources, shares a number of almost hilarious candidate lies that he has encountered.

But it’s really no laughing matter when the outstanding new hire you just brought in turns out to be a destructive, manipulative person with a criminal past.

Learn how to avoid the top mistakes made with conducting candidate background checks here:

Not having a consistent system for managing background checks.

If you are just checking the backgrounds of some of your candidates, but not all, this is not only unethical, but it’s risky.

Offering a job before the background check results are back.

For years, it has been a practice with some companies to hire people contingent upon a clean background check. This is not advisable because it can cause problems if the screening process takes a long time or the candidate refuses to leave.

Forgetting to verify educational records for candidates.

It’s been estimated that around one-third of all candidates falsify some aspect of their educational histories. For example, people close to graduating may indicate they already have a degree, as part of a job requirement.

The background check is too broad of a search.

When checking the backgrounds of candidates, it’s possible to neglect to check county records, and just check federal ones. There could be no convictions, but pending cases.

All background checks happen in-house rather than through third party.  

Again, this can be a risky mistake because a when handled this way, they can be less objective and steps can be missed. A third party or staffing firm can manage background checks much better.

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