Consider These Red Flags When Hiring a New Employee

2 min read
Fri, Sep 16, 2022

Employee Background Red FlagsHR managers must make the best decisions when hiring potential employees. While we don't recommend making a decision based on gut instinct alone, some red flags may offer clues as to the employability of the candidate.

Here are some big red flags management should consider when hiring a new employee.



One of the initial red flags in the hiring process is a chaotic-looking resume. Does the resume include short stints at a variety of different locations? Does that mean the candidate isn’t very big on commitment? Maybe the resume is littered with typos, is poorly written, or does not include all of the things that would normally be on a resume. If the resume has no phone numbers, contact information, dates, addresses, or names of former employers or references, that is a big red flag to take into consideration.

See also: Is There a Good Reason for Resume Gaps?


Another important factor to consider when hiring a new employee is the interview. Potential employees may or may not make a good first impression. If the candidate misses their scheduled interview, that’s a red flag. If they make the interview but appear unequipped, that could also be a bad sign. The most ideal way to size up a potential employee is an in-person interview. In that way, a hiring manager can judge how the candidate presents themselves, if they are on time and if there is anything else that does not fit the role that is being filled.

Sixth Sense

Something else, that cannot be understated, is the sixth sense hiring managers may have about an applicant. It could be something “off” or something unidentifiable, but it is something that can’t be ignored. If there is any uncertainty about a potential employee, it's a good practice to have another person interview them. By referring to someone else, the employer can get a better gauge of the candidate and avoid hiring bias.

Mitigating Risk with Employment Background Checks

Many companies are able to wean out bad apples from their employee search through the use of employee background check programs. While extensive background screening can be expensive, Verifirst can help uncover optimal background check information and help employers save money in the process.

During a VeriFirst employee background check, we may look at the following criteria:

  • Identity - including verification, social security trace, and address history
  • Criminal Records - including national, county, state, federal, and international
  • Verifications - including employment, education, driver's license, and professional license
  • Financial History (if applicable) - credit report history and summary
  • Substance Abuse - lab-conducted drug screening using a 4, 5, 9, or 10-panel test

Red flags during an employee background check can be everywhere or can be deftly hidden. However, it is your responsibility as an employer to make sure you tap into all of the potential conflicts and leave no stone unturned before offering a position to potential employees.


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