While applying for a job, candidates ignore the background verification process. Sometimes, they don’t think companies will actually go ahead with it.
However, an increasing number of companies are conducting a thorough background verification to ensure
The candidate is not exaggerating their role, experience and job skills
The candidate is who they say they are
Competition in the market is increasing by the day. Even a small slip-up can prove to be a liability for your company.
What Is Background Verification?
A background check is performed by employers to get more information about a candidate’s background. This can help you confirm that the data provided by them is accurate. While using interviews, background checks and applicant information, the objective is to hire the best possible applicant.
There’s no single standardised background checklist, so every organisation uses different tests to verify candidate information. Different industries also prioritise different facets. For example, a bank might mandate a credit history check while a fast food restaurant might prioritise work experience verification. There’s also no passing or failing level, instead different employers choose what works and what doesn’t.
Significance of Background Verification:
Background verification is an important tool for businesses to have. It enables you to choose the best fit out of all the applicants you get for a job role. There are many reasons for conducting background verification.
It protects other employees, customers and stakeholders from risks.
It improves the quality of people you hire and sets an industry standard.
It is mandated by law and industry regulations to conduct background checks.
It protects your company’s reputation and builds your credibility in the market.
It prevents or significantly reduces money laundering, chances of fraud, embezzlement, leaking of sensitive information and other criminal activity.
Employers are responsible for setting boundaries and defining company values when it comes to checking private information pertaining to a candidate. Employees must always be informed before checks are carried out. Even while conducting a background check of existing employees, you must let them know and consent to checks of their financial and criminal records.
How Do Background Checks Work?
Employers can benefit from partnering with a third-party service provider to carry out background checks. These service providers perform checks at different levels.
Verifying academic qualifications
Organisations carry out checks by reaching out to academic institutions and authenticating the credentials that are indicated on the candidate’s application form. Before doing so, make sure you get the exact graduation dates and other relevant information from the candidate.
Verifying employment records
This refers to the previous companies where the candidate has worked. These companies are often open to answering questions about the candidate and their work record in the respective organisations. While earlier there were checks conducted on salaries and pay scales, that is no longer allowed in most companies.
Reaching out to references
During the first moment of contact with a candidate, you usually ask them for references that you can reach out to. These references are often reporting managers, immediate supervisors or colleagues. You can speak to a candidate’s former supervisor without restriction unless you are specifically told otherwise. Different states have different laws relating to who you can reach out to and who you can’t. The key thing to remember is that you must get only the truth from them and they must not break any anti-discrimination rules or laws. You also need the consent of the candidate before you enquire about them elsewhere.
Which Checks Should You Carry Out?
It is often the discretion of the HR team and compliance with company policies that determine which background checks should be carried out. Partnering with a third-party provider for background verification can solve most of your problems in this regard.