Many employers require employees to undergo background screening. Background screenings are necessary for several reasons including validating identity, work history, and criminal history. The information provided in these screenings offers valuable insight into an individual’s work ethic and if he or she is a good fit into your organization’s culture. Also, with the turnover rate being high in many industries, a reasonable assumption can be made an employee’s longevity due to the fact of the cost that is incurred when onboarding an employee and all of the expense that it takes to replace an employee if the initial hire didn’t work out.

Pre-Employment Screening

Once a conditional job offer is extended to a candidate, it’s contingent upon the candidate successfully passing the background screening. A misstatement made by a candidate during the hiring process often is enough for an employer to question the candidate’s honesty or integrity and potentially disqualify them from a job. Before doing a background or credit check, employers must request and receive written permission from a candidate. In order to protect an organization, a background screening should be conducted on all prospective candidate’s so that the employee can perform all of the job requirements related to their position and are in fact who they say that they are.

Obtaining a License

Another instance of performing a background screening is when an employee is seeking additional licensure. This may be required when applying for specific jobs that require occupational licensure. For example, those that have access to confidential information. It is not uncommon for an employer to review an individual’s credit report and financial information to determine if there is any risk involved in getting an employee licensed for an occupation. Many careers in the financial industry require licenses, and the appropriate background screenings are conducted to qualify an individual.

A Requirement for a Workplace Investigation

Occasionally, an employer will need to perform a background screening when a situation occurs that requires a closer look into an employee’s background. For example, if an employee becomes involved in some form of misconduct at work and the HR department conducts an investigation, it is acceptable for an employer to do a background check while the employee is still working for the company. It is important to remember that an employee is a direct representation of an organization during and after working hours. Understanding all of the policies of an organization including the guideline outlined in the Code of Conduct are ideal.

When a background screening is performed this alleviates some of the risks that an organization can experience. The organization is making an effort not to jeopardize itself by hiring, promoting, or maintaining employment for an unfit employee. Organizational reputations have always been a great concern to employers, as the most highly regarded organizations generally can attract the best-qualified workers. Background screenings help employers safeguard their reputations by creating safer, more secure work environments staffed by qualified employees. Ensure that your organization adheres to a specific set of established guidelines that will hire and promote employees that are qualified to fill open positions within your organization.

References: Balance Careers, Hire Right