Unearthing the latest news and trends in the changing world of work. Lauren Small is a content and social media expert at GoodHire. She has written numerous articles on recruiting, onboarding, hiring, and HR best practices and has first-hand experience observing the cultural differences at large employers like Amazon and HubSpot and at Silicon Valley-based startup Inflection.

What Shows Up On An Employment Background Check | TransUnion ShareAble For Hires

Talent acquisition and talent management both require a huge investment of time and resources, so it makes sense to do your due diligence before bringing a new hire on board. First and foremost? Make sure that the person is exactly who they are claiming to be. A bad hire results in lost time and expenses due to the need to recruit and train another new hire, as well as a negative impact on employee morale and a decrease in overall team and company productivity.

How Do Employment Background Checks Work?

But the good news is that there is a way to help avoid this fate: by running a thorough background check. Background checks simply make good business sense.

They are critical for making a more well-informed hire, allowing your company to focus on growing the business, not on dealing with potential problems. And these potential problems can range from minor to rather severe.

What does a basic background check include?

Here are 4 risks you take if you fail to run a background check:. Trusting your employees is key.


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You have to trust them to do their jobs, to treat customers and partners with respect, and to represent your brand appropriately. Verifying credentials is particularly important when you consider a recent report from CareerBuilder. You might remember the case of former Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson, who landed in the headlines for allegedly misrepresenting his college degrees.

Hiring someone with false credentials can directly affect your existing employees, too. Extra time spent managing a bad hire is less time spent on helping the business grow. Therefore, running a background check is a surefire method to ensure you are hiring a candidate based on facts, giving you peace of mind and ensuring no time or effort go wasted. Using a background check service like GoodHire to verify education, employer history, and professional licenses earned helps you confirm candidate qualifications and move forward with certainty.

Many business owners are worried about employees stealing cash and inventory. Typically, an employment background check includes information and records from the past seven years, although some states allow up to 10 years. Learn more about background check laws in your state. If the position is specialized, applicants and employees may undergo further screenings. Further, the Fair Credit Reporting Act FCRA requires employers to comply with certain regulations to ensure that the background check process is done fairly.

For example, employers must get written permission from applicants and employees and let them know it might use the information it finds in its decision about their employment.

What does a background check show for pre-employment screening?

With this advance notice, the candidate has a chance to review the report for errors as well as explain negative information, such as gaps in their employment history, convictions, and criminal offenses. Employers typically outsource employment background checks to a third-party company that has access to the necessary databases, including police records, credit reports, medical records, and more. Employment screening vendors will advertise that it is certified or accredited by the FCRA.

The cost of an employment background check can depend on what the employer wants to include for review. Many employment screening vendors, including GoodHire, offer discount pricing for bulk orders. A criminal background check is often required in situations where a person or organization needs to know about major criminal activity, including violent or sex crimes, fraud, embezzlement, or felony convictions before making a decision regarding employment, adoption, military enlistment, a firearm purchase, and more. Depending on the industry, such as healthcare, there may be regulations against hiring certain felons if their conviction is relevant to the job.

For the formerly incarcerated, a criminal record is a barrier to reentering the workforce, making it much more difficult for ex-felons to rehabilitate into society. In an effort to increase employment opportunities and decrease recidivism rates , the federal government offers incentives to employers for hiring convicted felons through the Work Opportunity Tax Credit program.

Different states have different variations of criminal background checks. Examples include a level 1 background check, which is a state-only name-based check and employment history check; and a level 2 background check, which is a state and national fingerprint-based check and consideration of disqualifying offenses. Often, many of these searches are included in a basic background check, however, some background check services may charge an additional fee to check for aliases or to search federal, state, and county criminal records in addition to national databases.

Any time a person purchases a firearm from a licensed importer, manufacturer, or dealer, the seller must perform a universal background check via the National Instant Background Check System NICS to determine whether a prospective buyer is eligible to purchase a firearm. Thirty-two states allow gun transfers between unlicensed individuals without a background check and the remaining 18 states and DC place restrictions on private gun sales, requiring a federally licensed dealer FFL to run a background check before a transfer can be completed. Many employers run the OIG background check before hiring an employee or entity, and routinely afterward to ensure their employees do not get added to the list once hired.

Search results include date of birth, address, and reason for exclusion and can be confirmed with a Social Security number SSN. If an employer fails to run the OIG background check and hires someone whose name is on the sanctions list, the employer could be forced to pay civil monetary penalties. The employer is also potentially at risk for safety and liability issues.

In the following cases, the OIG has the discretion to add individuals or entities to the list, or leave them off:. E-Verify is used by employers to verify the identity and employment eligibility of newly hired employees. The online check compares information from the I-9 form new employees are required to fill out with government records to confirm that the employee is authorized to work in the U. Form I-9 and E-Verify are similar in their purpose, but E-Verify takes the process one step further to make sure new employees are authorized to work in the country.

Here are some key differences between the two:. Launched in , the Automated Fingerprint Identification System AFIS stores more than 35 million sets of fingerprints, mostly submitted by law enforcement agencies. A fingerprint background check, or Identity History Summary , is often used in conjunction with other background checks and is most often used as part of the pre-employment screening process.