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Do You Need To Run Background Checks On Potential Employees?

Different companies require different things from their workforce. For instance, a cybersecurity firm will need to hire professionals with a completely different set of skills from a company providing landscaping services. For this reason, it is important that organizations take time to establish a foolproof pre-employment screening process. This will ensure that they hire candidates who are the perfect fit for the job in terms of skills and experience.

There are different parts of a pre-employment screening, and one of them is the background check. This process involves collecting various information about an employee’s history that could affect job performance. Here are some critical reasons why you need to conduct a background check on applicants as a part of your hiring process.

Confirm Skills and Qualifications

One of the most important reasons why employers check the employment history of job candidates is to ensure that they really have the skills and qualifications needed for the position. Some job applicants are not totally truthful on their résumés. They might inflate their job titles or make up skills that they do not really have.

The company’s human resource department can double-check applicants’ credentials by contacting their previous employers, training centers, or the educational institutions they graduated from.

Past employers can confirm whether the applicants really held the position reflected on their résumé, if they passed all the necessary screenings for their previous position, like drug tests, and if they had the skills to carry out the work expected of them effectively and efficiently.

In the case of educational institutions or training centers, the HR officer can verify if the candidates really completed their degree by cross-checking with the admissions and records office.

Employees who are unqualified for the job can be a serious risk to the company. Their lack of experience might cause injuries and workplace accidents, and their substandard work might compromise the reputation of the company.

Check the Candidate’s Attendance

An employee could be highly skilled and qualified, but if he or she lacks the motivation and commitment to come to work, this person will still be a liability to the company. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, absenteeism costs employers $225.8 billion every year because of productivity losses, or that is $1,685 per employee.

One of the important questions that background checks need to answer is whether the job candidates had a clean track record in terms of attendance in their previous employment.

The human resource department usually keeps records of an employee’s tardiness and attendance. They may also include notes on whether an employee had serious attendance violations such as habitual tardiness, constantly going on unannounced leaves, or making up questionable excuses when being absent.

It is important for businesses to know whether candidates are dependable and will stay with the company in the long run. Their attendance will speak volumes about their level of commitment to their jobs.

Check Criminal History

In addition to contacting previous employers, companies should also require police clearances from their job applicants.

Police checks are useful for promoting safety and productivity within the organization.

They will usually include information about any pending legal cases and past criminal convictions involving the person. It is very risky to hire employees with a criminal history. They might endanger not only their colleagues but also the company’s reputation as a whole. Your customers and investors might have second thoughts transacting with you, knowing you have dubious personalities working for you.

Job candidates can usually obtain a police clearance by submitting a request directly to the FBI. For a fee, the FBI can provide an identity history summary, or better known as a rap sheet or criminal record. This data will usually list down information associated with fingerprint submissions related to arrests, disposition reports, and other data submitted by authorized criminal-justice agencies.

Reach Out to Character References

There are valuable insights about a job candidate that are not readily available on paper. This includes information about a person’s moral character, work ethic, emotional intelligence, and interpersonal skills. This is where character references come in. Character references are supplemental and can give you some very in-depth insights about whether the job candidate is worth investing in or not.

To make this a part of your pre-employment screening process, you can require candidates to provide at least three character references that you can contact. These can include previous coworkers, immediate superiors, mentors, and even teachers who can give feedback about the applicant’s job performance and other pertinent traits.

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