Employee Background Checks: 6 Things to Look For

October 18, 2017 at 09:26 AM


It's a common practice for companies to have background checks done on potential employees. This information can be useful in identifying character flaws or red flags like false application information. According to A Matter of Fact, 39% of all background checks had at least one serious flag. So, what should employers be looking for when they receive background check information?

1. Education History

Education history is an important piece of a candidate's resume. If an academic degree is listed, refer to the background check to make sure the applicant obtained it. The background check will also tell you which institutions a candidate attended and when they attended them. Cross-reference that information with an applicant's resume to validate their claims.

2. Work History

According to Hire Right, 34% of application forms contain lies about experience, education, and ability to perform essential functions on the job. Look for discrepancies in employment such as:

It's a major red flag if you find that a candidate's application is not matching up with the work history information in their background check.

3. Criminal History

The criminal history information a background check provides can help to avoid hiring a potentially dangerous person or someone with bad character flaws. Look for any misdemeanor or felony charges, especially workplace violence claims like sexual assault or property theft. When considering criminal history in an employment decision, make sure you follow the Equal Employment Opportunity guidelines.

4. Civil History

Civil history records can reveal information about an applicant's temperament and character that criminal history may not. Don't forget to carefully review any claims or lawsuits against an applicant. If an applicant was a defendant in a court case about eviction nonpayment of debt, personal injury or destruction of property, their civil history presents a red flag. 

5. Credit Reports 

Credit can be a good measure of how responsible an applicant is, especially if they are applying for a position that involves the management of finances. This type of information would not necessarily present red flags except in extreme cases like bankruptcy. If an applicant is not working directly with finances, having bad credit would likely not affect their work abilities. 

6. Driving Record
Driving records are typically only relevant if an applicant will be driving as part of their job.

If a position requires an employee to drive on company business, check for:

Now that you know what employers should look for in background checks, contact Future Systems to get started with a simple and affordable background screening solution.