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Employee Screening: What Should Your Business Be Looking For

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Recruitment is not everyone’s favorite job task—it’s time-consuming, uncertain and costly for the most part. However, it’s also something you need to get right if you want your business to thrive. Why? Well, hiring the wrong people can often cause the repetition of the entire hiring task, and that’s not the worst part. If you’re not screening correctly, you can welcome all sorts of health, safety, theft, failure and lawsuit hazards into your workplace and cause a lot of issues for your business processes. So here’s everything you need to know about employee screening and why it’s so important for your business. 

What is employee screening?

Employee screening is a process used to verify information provided by the candidate (received through their resume, application or interview). Screening can also be used to identify character flaws and criminal tendencies that might put your business in danger by tarnishing its reputation, harming staff and jeopardizing the employer. Oftentimes, screenings are done to see whether a candidate can be trusted with management, finance and resources, as well as with sensitive information and intellectual property. 

Benefits of screening

Since 83% of HR experts discover candidate discrepancies on their CVs, there are many risks you can avoid with employee screening. For instance, with screening, you can avoid employing a person who’s unqualified for the job and will not be able to do it properly and safely. By hiring an unqualified employee, you will need to go back to the recruitment process, lose money, time and nerve at best. 

Hiring a person who can’t be trusted with money and finances can be disastrous. No matter if a person has good qualifications, if their background check shows money unreliability, they can transfer that habit into their workplace and cost you a lot of money in the long run. 

Also, if a candidate claims to have experience and training operating certain machines or equipment and they don’t, this can create a whole new set of problems for your business. They will pose a safety hazard for themselves and others if they can’t use the equipment correctly. Misuse of machinery can cause major incidents involving property damage, injuries to employees and even fatalities. 

How to conduct a background check?

There are many ways an employer and their team can conduct background checks concerning criminal, health, drugs, credit and employment history checks. However, if you decide to do them yourself, you can expect to be faced with a time-consuming process that will make your recruitment process last much longer than expected. In developed countries like Australia, employers usually choose to hire a professional to speed up the process and ensure its validity. By consulting a professional private investigator in Melbourne you can get quick and accurate results so you can find the right person for the job without any trouble on your side. Professionals have all databases, networks and connections at their disposal, so they can conduct a detailed screening and save you from many risks. 

What to pay attention to?

When screening your employees (alone or through a PI agency), pay special attention to their criminal record. Federal agencies usually provide services to businesses so you can check the criminal background of candidates when appropriate. There’s also Social Security Number Tracing used to verify the validity of one’s social security info. Drug tests are also very important and it can be conducted following the state law. This test has become a common practice when assessing the trustworthiness of employees, avoiding injuries and hiring productive employees. 

Checking your candidates’ credit status is also important since it can determine their financial problems and whether they can affect their trustworthiness and behavior. All applicants have to provide their consent and access to their credit score before the screening process. 

Where to draw the line?

Many employers also choose to do the social media check, however, you might come across various legal issues if you don’t do it correctly. Every country has its own guidelines on this issue. In some countries, it can be illegal to look up a candidate’s gender, age, race, religion or sexuality, so make sure to check what’s legal and what’s not in your country or state. 

Why can social media be so problematic when it comes to these issues? The reason is that the information you dig up can lead to hiring bias and discrimination. In case your candidate suspects you looked the sensitive information up, you could be facing a lawsuit. Also, since not everyone uses social media obsessively, you can come across various inconsistencies of information. Some people have outdated profiles while others enter false information (which is legal) and you can make various hiring mistakes. 


Your goal is to find someone who fits your company culture to the T and can conduct business operations with ease and expertise. That’s why you need to go through all these screening processes, and if possible, hire professionals to lead them. This will ensure all the proper tests have been conducted and you’ll surely get the best quality hire.

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