Best Practices in HR

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Chris Dyer
  January 1, 1970

The Complete Guide To Advanced Background Checks

Hiring is a major decision. A bad hire could cost your company thousands of dollars – and not just because of the high cost of employee turnover. Bad hires can affect your reputation, losing you both customers and making top talent hesitant to apply to future positions.

This is especially true if you work in an industry where employees have access to sensitive information like customers’ social security numbers or medical histories. Pre-employment screenings are standard in most companies, but certain situations may require more rigorous background check solutions. In fact – based on the position and certain state or federal requirements – employers are often authorized to look farther back and more in depth into someone’s employment and criminal history.

Should you do an advanced background check? While many people feel they do not have the time and resources, a quality background check company can often get information quickly, efficiently, and accurately while ensuring compliance. If you have the time and resources to conduct advanced checks – especially if you are hiring employees with access to sensitive information – it is well worth the extra effort in the long run.

What Is An Advanced Background Check?

The term “advanced background check” can mean a lot of different things.

A standard background check usually looks into criminal history and employment verification. An advanced background check may look into standard background check information in more depth. For example, a standard background check may verify the past two or three employers. An advanced search may check a candidate’s employment history for the last 10 years.

An advanced background check may also add on specific types of searches and screenings such as:

  • Employment Credit Check
  • Social Media Screening
  • Federal Criminal Search
  • Federal Civil Search
  • Reference Verification
  • Education Verification
  • Professional License Verification

Depending on your industry and the specific position, some of the above searches may be beneficial or even necessary for your company.

Why Should I Run An Advanced Background Check?

Spot Hidden Red Flags

Red flags can easily go unnoticed in a routine background check.

A routine criminal background check, for example, often does not include things like civil court cases that look at the criminal history on the county, state, and federal level. Therefore, a standard criminal background check can come back clean, but an employee can still have a history of criminal behavior that may put your company at risk.

Running a civil court check can help. These look at criminal history on the county, state, and federal level. If an employee has been involved in non-criminal lawsuits, judgements, or complaints, this could reveal something about their character.

This does not just extend to high-profile positions either. Employees at all levels have potential access to your company’s data. Even for entry level positions, advanced background checks may be necessary. A data breach not only damages your reputation – sometimes irreparably – it can also result in legal action.

Reduce Turnover

The reasons for an advanced background check are not always about protecting your company from fraud or theft. Advanced background checks can also assess culture fit. Oftentimes, someone needs to have very specific soft skills for certain positions – especially customer-facing work.

A social media screening can look at publicly available information on social media websites like Facebook, Twitter, and TikTok. They can also look at public comments on things like news articles. How someone behaves on social media is often a good indicator of their character. Someone can come off as personable and pleasant in an interview, but have a combative attitude online that could potentially make them difficult in a professional setting.

Get Screenings Specific To Your Industry

An advanced background check can be especially important for certain industries.

If a job requires a very specific skill set, professional license verification may be necessary. If someone will be handling dangerous equipment, for example, you want to make sure they actually have the licenses they claim to have related to their job.

For an employee who is handling money or has high levels of clearance, credit reports are often added to ensure they have made responsible financial decisions in the past.

Some industries need to do very specific screenings to ensure a candidate is a good fit. If your employee will be driving a lot, for example, you might want to look at their driving records. A history of accidents or traffic violations could put your company at legal risk.

These things would not be covered in a standard background check. With advanced background checks, you can look at more specific public records to screen for red flags that would be a major liability in your industry.

Are Advanced Background Checks Legal?

When working with a reputable company, yes. A good background check company will ensure 100% compliance based on both state and federal regulations. This is very important as conducting background checks without consent can land your company in major legal trouble.

Avoid online services where you can simply enter information like email addresses and phone numbers to conduct an advanced search for a small fee. Even if you get an employee to sign off, these sites often violate local regulations and could result in a lawsuit if you discover embarrassing information about a candidate through illegal means.

At PeopleG2, we pride ourselves on making compliance uncomplicated. We advise you on compliance in every step of the background check process to ensure you are familiar with all laws regarding state, local, and industry-specific regulations. We make sure you get the information you need to know without putting yourself at undue legal risk.

Advanced Background Checks: The Bottom Line

A routine background check can miss a lot about an employee’s history. When someone walks into a job interview, they are always on their best behavior. You may not notice red flags on the surface, and unsavory behaviors often do not show up on routine background checks.

Advanced background checks may take a little extra effort, but they are ultimately worth it in the long run – especially if a potential employee will be handling sensitive information. A bad hire can cost you your reputation and potentially put you at legal risk. With an advanced background check, you know you’re really hiring and are able to make the most informed decisions possible.

Ready to get started? PeopleG2 combines automated technology with a human touch where and when it is needed to conduct thorough background checks quickly and efficiently. We offer many advanced background check options catered to every industry. Reach out here to book a consultation.

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