skip to Main Content
10 Do’s and Dont’s for Screening a Potential Employee

One of the most important tasks you should perform when hiring a new employee is to investigate their background. The information you receive can be invaluable.

The cost and time expended in finding a replacement for a poor hiring decision in some cases, can set you back considerably. Additionally, the potential legal liability created by hiring an employee that you failed to check out prove to be unethical or dishonest could be tremendous.

According to a recent survey of human resources professionals, an estimated 69 percent of organizations claim they conduct criminal background checks on all job candidates.That survey shows another 18 percent conduct such checks on job finalists, and only 14 percent say they don’t research candidates for criminal records.

Here are 10 things to remember when it comes to protecting your business against bad hires.

  1. Don’t skimp on the research. Take advantage of the voluminous amount of data available. You have access to  the applicant’s criminal history, employment and education, driving record, and so much more. Companies lose great candidates when they look at only one specific item. They may also be the target of an investigation by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) for making a decision about an applicant based solely on a criminal record, no matter what the charge or how long ago the offense occurred.
  2. DO follow the law. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires you to have a legal release form completed by the applicant. You must inform that person of his/her rights. If you see negative information, you must provide them with a copy of the report, as well as any pre-adverse communication. If they cannot successfully show that the information is incorrect, you may then provide an adverse communication.
  3. Don’t use the “box.”The EEOC and many local counties have enacted ordinances to ban the “box,” that question on a job application that reads, “Have you ever been convicted of a crime?”. Instead of immediate dismissal of a candidate, interview and consider all applicants equally. Then, you can run a broad and thorough background check.
  4. Don’t bend the laws.There are so many opportunities to conduct a background check the wrong way. As an employer, you must take great care to follow the rules. The regulations concerning background checks vary based on federal, state, local and job-specific laws. Check with your company’s legal counsel if you’re unsure of how to proceed.
  5. Don’t be inconsistent. Two applicants applying for the same job should have the same searches and investigations run on them. Ensure that the process for all applicants is consistent. Different job types may require different levels of investigation, but for the same job title, keep your process uniform to avoid charges of discrimination.
  6. Do communicate. If and when you find something on a background check that may impact the decision to hire, at a minimum, engage the applicant in a conversation. Many misconceptions, mistakes, and reporting errors can be resolved by conducting that face-to-face communication. Again, the FCRA has specific requirements on how to deal with these situations.
  7. Do learn to recognize patterns. Patterns of behavior are the best way to evaluate your applicant. A single good or bad act should not be the defining measure of a person. Recognizing consistent patterns is a defensible way for employers to make hiring decisions.
  8. Do seek out positives. Background checks are inherently viewed as a way to pinpoint negative information. Use a background check to also find positives. That will help you choose between well-qualified candidates.
  9. Don’t run a limited search yourself. You can’t find everything online. So much of the concrete — legally obtained — data for a background check can only be conducted by a licensed background check firm.
  10. Do use a professional agency to process your background check. Great screening companies will do a far better job of locating the information you want. They have the experience and processes to be accurate and efficient. They also prevent you from viewing data that might be a violation of state or federal law.
Paul Gerber

Paul Gerber

Paul Gerber, in charge of business development, Paul joined parent organization of AGoodEmployee.com, Application Research in 2008 specializing in background screening for the property management industry. With the expansion of the employment screening division, Paul was the natural choice to head up marketing. With over 40 years of people management experience, Paul served as Vice President and sales manager for a large Los Angeles area real estate developer, and Chief Financial officer for a national mortgage servicing firm.
If you have any questions for Paul He can be reached at 855-361-1667 or by email at [email protected]

This Post Has 0 Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Stories

NY Cannabis Board Issues New Rules Allowing People To Grow Medical Marijuana At Home

New York’s Cannabis Control Board issued regulations Thursday to allow medical marijuana users and their caregivers to grow their own supply at home. The proposal, now open to public comment for 60 days, would permit the cultivation of up to six marijuana plants in a private residence. The regulation will take effect after the commentary…

NY Cannabis Board Issues New Rules Allowing People To Grow Medical Marijuana At Home

New York’s Cannabis Control Board issued regulations Thursday to allow medical marijuana users and their caregivers to grow their own supply at home. The proposal, now open to public comment for 60 days, would permit the cultivation of up to six marijuana plants in a private residence. The regulation will take effect after the commentary…

Florida’s First Black Medical Marijuana License Recipient Will Have to Pay for the Privilege

The process was like the slow burn of a fatty (prescribed for medicinal use only, of course). Last week, five years after Floridians voted to legalize medical marijuana in 2016, state officials announced an “emergency rule” that sets aside one medical marijuana license specifically for a Black farmer. That might seem like a welcome measure to help…

Texas says popular cannabis extract, delta-8, is illegal, sending retailers scrambling

The federal farm bill in 2018 made the substance legal because of its low THC content. Three years after federal legislation removed the marijuana extract known as delta-8 THC from the nation’s list of controlled substances, Texas health officials have put it on its own list of illegal drugs, sending a shockwave through the growing…

More Categories

Back To Top
×Close search
Search