Thorough employment screening for potential new staff members and avoiding background check red flags are essential to a successful hiring process. Partnering with a trusted, proven professional in the consumer reporting industry space can help ensure effective, compliant screening.
Unfortunately, not all background check companies are created equal and there are many background check red flags to watch out for. Without proper vetting of employment screening providers, employers might make a poor choice. Improper screening in violation of EEOC guidelines could in turn lead to ineffective and in some cases negligent hiring.
The following are some of the top background check red flags that companies should look for when considering a new screening company or reevaluating a current one:
Incomplete or Insufficient Information
The report you receive should be clear, complete and concise. Gaps or omissions in the report indicate possible negligence or incompetence on the part of the screener. This is possibly the most significant background check red flag to watch for.
Report Includes “Possible Matches”
Listing all or mostly “possible matches” on the reports received are background check red flags to be aware of because it indicates that the company is not fully cross-checking their results to eliminate incorrect matches. It is an indicator of a subpar background screening company.
Lack of Clarity About Their Methods
If a company isn’t forthcoming about their procedures and methods, this is another warning sign. Effective, successful background screening companies take pride in their methods and employment screening processes. A lack of transparency likely means they won’t be thorough, complete or in full compliance with the law in their background checks. This could put companies at risk for negligent hiring litigation down the road.
They Only Offer “Instant” Database Background Checks
Background screening companies that offer instant background checks without offering non-instant background checks such as county criminal checks and have a research team to further investigate records are some background check red flags to watch out for. In many cases background screening that is conducted properly and in compliance with the law cannot be accomplished “instantly” or in a brief amount of time. Additional research and/or county criminal checks need to be performed for the records returned from an instant search.
They Subcontract Out Their Work
Companies that outsource background check work, especially to other countries, will likely try to conceal this, so these background check red flags are something you will have to inquire about. It’s not unheard of for a subcontractor to outsource work as well, and in this case employers can never be sure of the source. The further removed the job becomes, the less accountability there will be for the results.
Poor customer service is another background check red flag when inquiring about the results a background check or evaluating background screening companies (or any service provider). If businesses experience delays, missed deadlines or the inability to easily connect with customer service personnel, these background check red flags are a sign that it’s time to shop for a replacement company.
Effective employment screening and employee criminal history checks are key to hiring the best workforce possible. Employers should avoid companies that demonstrate these background check red flags and warning signs.