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on May 29, 2019 Hiring and Recruiting

How Your Background Check Company Helps with Hiring Decisions

Background Check Company Helps with Hiring Decisions

Once the hiring need has been established, a job description and listing is created to determine the right candidate for the job. During the hiring process, a candidate's information may be reviewed by everyone from recruiters to human resources to management.  Along the way, the applicant may be subject to removal from consideration. The ultimate hiring decision, however, is made by the hiring manager who will be working with the candidate. 

If you've incorporated background screening in your hiring process, your screening partner may also help with the hiring decision. Here's how.

How your background check company helps with hiring decisions.

The Best Way to Hire the Right Employee

Hiring Need: A hiring need is typically identified when a job position becomes available. This may be due to an employee leaving the company, being promoted or a newly formed position. 

Job Description: If the position isn't new, a job description may already be available to tweak or alter for the hiring process. If the position is brand new, it is important for specifications, experience and qualifications to be identified. 

Hiring Process: Once the specifics have been recorded, the hiring manager must also provide information such as when the job is available or needed, who will be involved in the hiring process, what interview questions are important and what red flags will remove the candidate from consideration. 

See also: The Need for a Hiring Decision Matrix

Recruiting: The job description will be posted and recruitment begins for applicants. Recruiters may scout LinkedIn, networking events or other online job-seeker boards. An applicant tracking system can help alleviate the time and efforts of sorting and reviewing resumes. 

Initial Interviews: Interviews will be scheduled with top applicants that have been identified so far.  Human resources may field these initial interviews and phone calls to determine if the applicant can continue in the process. After this first run of screening by HR, it may be a good time to begin background checks on a pool of candidates.

Background Checks: In order to narrow down the candidate pool, an initial round of background screening may be necessary. Applicants must submit their consent to a background check and be made aware that they could be removed from consideration depending on the results of the screening. These screens are typically used to identify which applicants have truthful information on their applications and resumes such as:

  • Identity checks
  • Verification of education and employment
  • National criminal background check and sex offender search

Free: Online Applicant Consent Portal

Final Interviews: After the applicant pool has been significantly narrowed, a final round of interviews will be necessary with the hiring manager. 

Deeper Background Checks: Once the candidates have been narrowed down to only a few, a second, more in-depth, round of background checks may be necessary.  Again, the applicant must be made aware that different background checks will be run, give consent and understand that any job offer will be contingent on the screening results.

These checks will look deeper into the candidate background - especially as their history relates to the job-description.  Before making any hiring decisions, set a baseline for employee background checks including:

  • Identify the types of background checks you’ll include for each Job / Department
  • Determine how far back your background check search will go (3 years, 5 years, 7 years, etc.)
  • Standardize a decision matrix for background check results to determine what results will be deemed acceptable and which ones will require individualized assessment.

Hiring Decision: At this point, the hiring manager will have a mostly clear picture of the perfect candidate for the job.

See Also: Your New Hire Failed Their Background Check. Now What? 

How Your Background Check Partner Helps with Hiring Decisions

To avoid conflicts under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), most background check companies (aka Consumer Reporting Agencies or CRA) will want to ensure that the final hiring decision is in the hands of the employer. However, this is not to say that your screening provider can’t help you filter results and interpret the data contained in a consumer report or background check.

As an example, VeriFirst can help provide guidance and sample templates for background checks and screening policies. After setting up a standard and consistent process, it is still important to thoroughly read and comprehend each employee screening report. Why? Because the FCRA regulates an employer’s use of background check data in their hiring decision.

Employers must also be aware of local, city and state FCRA restrictions such as:

  • Limitations on asking about prior criminal arrests or convictions (Ban the Box)
  • Limitations on Credit Reports for Employment (unless job-related)
  • Restrictions on asking for prior employment Salary/Pay information.

As your screening partner, VeriFirst will help filter non-compliant data (such as removing non-convictions older than 7 years, reviewing false positives / non-matches based on common name identifiers, etc.) prior to returning a completed background check report to the employer.

Once the completed background check report is ready for employer review, VeriFirst attaches a “VeriGuide” - color-coded guide for clear / records Found - as well as an Executive Summary to the top of every report. Each item in the Executive Summary is clickable, so the employer can drill down and review the details in the report. All data is formatted in a standardized method to help the employer easily read results regardless of the search type or reporting jurisdiction. If a non-hire decision is made based on results contained in the background check, VeriFirst will provide a clear path for the employer to follow for FCRA compliant pre-adverse and adverse action notifications.

A background check company should be more than just a data provider. With so much information available and so many variations of data reporting methods and jargon, a good background check company should go the extra mile and help guide your hiring team on risk, compliance and data interpretation.


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Ryan Howard

Vice President, Business Development at VeriFirst, a BYL Company

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