Do Your Due Diligence with Criminal Background Checks Before Hiring

Sooner or later, it happens to every business: someone you hired or contracted has some unpleasant secrets that come back to haunt the company. While most organizations make it policy to ask potential new hires about their criminal histories, it shouldn’t be a surprise that not every applicant is forthcoming with the truth.

According to HireRight’s 2017 employment screening benchmark study, a whopping 85 percent of employers found that applicants have been less than truthful on their resumes or applications. While some of these lies are minor and involve fudging academic achievements, some pertain to criminal or sexual harassment histories.

Manual Background Checks

While you could dedicate an employee to manually conducting background checks on each potential new hire, there are drawbacks to this approach. For starters, your employees are already busy with their current duties, and a rush job can miss important details. Secondly, most of your existing employees likely lack the expertise and/or the tools to engage in the right level of due diligence before hiring. Scouring social media and search engines can help, but it’s time-consuming and may not yield critical information. If you need qualified workers in place quickly, a disorganized manual process will create impractical delays.

Getting employment checks right is a sound business decision that saves organizations time and money and protects them from litigation. A study conducted in 2008 by the Society for Human Resource Management found that the average cost to settle a negligent hiring lawsuit was $1 million.

Professional Employee Screening Services

A sound policy of criminal background checks also creates a safer and more positive work environment for existing employees by preventing workplace violence or harassment, and helps keep morale and productivity high by reducing turnover. In short, every company needs all the facts about potential employees before they can make sound hiring decisions.

For this reason, smart companies rely on professional services to facilitate thorough criminal background checks. Federal employment law does not bar employers from conducting searches for criminal and sex offender information on hiring candidates as long as it’s done in a non-discriminatory way. (Find the most recent Equal Employment Opportunity Commission guidelines regarding background checks here.)

At DataCheck we offer tools that allow hiring organizations to quickly do a multi-jurisdictional search of state and county criminal records on any individual. Our custom solution, called C.O.P.S. – Criminal Offender Profile Summary, provides one of the broadest searches available for information from criminal data repositories as well as sex offender registries.

Relying on professional services to conduct pre-employment background checks makes good business sense. Pre-employment screening services should be an important element of every company’s HR strategy. This way, you can prevent the “unpleasant surprises” before they happen. Contact us today!