Background Screening Is Becoming a Useful Tool For Employers

By: Pat Reyes

Background checks are becoming the norm in the workforce hiring process. Companies are finding out that spending a little money upfront for a background screen on a potential new hire is money well spent. The costs of not checking an applicant's background and rolling the dice so to speak can be devastating.

First, let's take a look at some alarming facts about job applicants. Although it is human nature for people to try and look their best to employers, the reality is that people are simply misrepresenting themselves on an ever increasing basis.

It has been reported that thirty percent of employment applications contain false or misleading information. If you are making an important decision on selecting a new candidate for a job in your company, do you want to rely solely on information that could be false?

Another startling statistic is that resumes have even more false information than employment applications. That's right. Resumes are littered with 40% of misrepresented facts. It has become a common practice for applicants to try and make their resumes look a lot better than they actually are.

Employers need to look beyond the job application and resume and verify the facts. If the applicant can not be solely trusted, then the employer needs to have a way to gain access to their background information. Background screening is quickly becoming the ideal way to accomplish this goal.

Employers need to know about the person's work history and education for sure. But there is also the matter of checking if there is a criminal record. Other helpful information might include their financial history, medical history, or even their online reputation.

Although it is true there are some restrictions related to medical information, it's not illegal for an employer to ask questions about an applicant's background, or even to require a background check as a condition for employment.

There are many different background screening reports that can be accessed. Some examples include criminal record checks, international employment, professional license verifications, reference and employment checks, and motor vehicle reports, just to name a few.

Some companies choose to run their own background checks, but there are some serious drawbacks to doing it in-house. Most companies are choosing to hire a background screening company to do this work for them. When background checks are ran through a background screening company, you must comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). Following the laws is obviously of the utmost importance.

What should a company look for in a background check company? Look for a professional partner, not just an information peddler. Other important considerations include working with a company that has an account manager, not simply a customer service pool. Be careful hiring a company based on pricing alone. They have to cut costs somewhere.

Background screening is a knowledge based industry that is highly regulated. Working with companies that understand and comply with the laws should be a primary determinant as well. Some companies now offer online technology that allows the employer to run the screens themselves. This can be very convenient and efficient. The cost of performing background screening is surprisingly affordable too.

When pros are weighed against the cons, background screening is often the way to go for employers. It is one of the reasons the industry is growing at nearly 25% per year.

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At United Background Screening, companies can execute their own background checks and get prompt reports. Go to to get started.

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