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8 Common Background Check Blunders to Avoid

Common Background Check Blunders to Avoid

Let’s face it!!

A background check is necessary whenever potential employees, tenants, or volunteers are considered for their respective positions.

It is, without a doubt, your most valuable resource in determining whether the person would be a good fit for your company.

Common Background Check Blunders to Avoid

Beyond gut instincts and initial impressions, a background check offers factual information that you may use to support your choices as you reduce your possibilities.

Before beginning the best background check, you should know about a few major problems.

Mistake #1: Omit to Collect all necessary IDs

When gathering data for a background check, make sure to get maiden names, middle initials, birth dates, etc. If you don’t, you can retrieve data belonging to someone else (or multiple others), which creates a ton of extra effort and causes headaches for everyone.

Mistake #2: Fail to Attain Written Consent

You must receive written authorization before conducting a background check under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. The fact that the check results will be used to decide whether to hire the applicant must be made explicit in this request. Additionally, you must let applicants know that they have the right to have any errors removed if they harm your decision to hire them.

Mistake #3: Failing to Conduct Focused Searches at Every Place

When choosing positions that deal with high-risk clients, such as children, the elderly, and the disabled, a complete background check should pull information on every area an applicant has ever lived in. If you don’t check everyone’s addresses, information about occurrences that happened in one state can go completely unnoticed.

Mistake #4: Overwhelm yourself with data

Run a check (medical history, credit, driving history, etc.) only if necessary; otherwise, skip it. Your community might even forbid specific screenings for particular positions. Contact your vendor or legal counsel for further information about your restrictions.

Mistake #5: Failing to Evaluate Every Applicant

The screening price may differ if you select candidates from a national pool of applicants. Never decide to screen one applicant but not another because, for whatever reason because this could be seen as prejudice. The best strategy is to specify in your policy when background checks will be performed and then perform one for each employee who reaches that stage.

Mistake #6: Give Convictions and Arrest Records Equal Weight

The “ban-the-box” movement works to persuade companies not to bar applicants with criminal backgrounds from positions. Consider that arrest records do not necessarily indicate guilt and, as such, should not immediately reject applicants from certain types of professions. Arrests are not as damning on a background check as a conviction. It would help if you took the severity of the crime and the demands of the position.

Mistake #7: Don’t give the candidate a chance to refute unfavorable information

When unfavorable data from a background check emerges that could influence the hiring decision, employers must let candidates know. The candidate should always be allowed to refute or correct such material.

Mistake #8: Make inquiries about positions Not Related to the One You’re Applying For

It is crucial to do searches unique to the job position in question. For instance, there is no need to investigate a candidate’s driving history if the role does not include driving.


You can prevent accountability for hiring errors by learning how to select a trustworthy background check provider.

Selecting a reputable and effective background check provider is essential for your company’s hiring process to go smoothly and comply with the law.