Out With The Old Employee Screening Practices, In With The New

It’s  time to evaluate your employee background screening practices and the screening company you currently use.

As we close 2015 and start a new year, it’s a good time to evaluate your pre-employment background-screening program.  It may be time to make some changes yourself. With ban-the-box legislation and regulations knocking at your front door, you MUST make certain that your employee screening practices follow the law.  You must also be sure that the screening company you use to provide these services is knowledgeable when it comes to laws and practices.


Why isn’t anyone in customer service answering the phone?
That’s a good way to know you are in trouble.  Whether customer service isn’t picking up or returning calls, it’s a telltale sign you could be using the wrong company.  If you do reach someone by phone and they can’t answer your questions, it’s time to find a replacement.

Is something missing in the results?  
Some companies actually overlook items in their search.  That can lead to you hiring someone with a criminal record or a person who isn’t as qualified as they claim to be.  These truths can come out via the employee or another situation.  Regardless, these “surprises” shouldn’t happen in the first place.

Is the screening company compliant?
This is the most important question you can ask.  If the company you use does not follow the law, it could result in you being thrown into a courtroom for negligent hiring.  For example, an employer may want information on things that are illegal to report.  While the company may be able to access things like juvenile records or arrest information that’s more than seven year old, doing so is not legal.  Make sure your consumer reporting agency (background check company) has a compliance department.  Ask your background screening vendor if they are accredited with The National Association of Professional Background Screeners.  If they say no to either (OR BOTH) of those questions, you need to rethink your contract with them.  NAPBS Accredidation proves that the background screening company is compliant, abides by proper procedures and follows strict industry standards.

Are you seeing value in the results that are found?
Know where your money is going when it comes to a screening service.  Understand all the costs involved and how the money you’re spending is being used.  If the company isn’t providing that information to you, it might be time to find someone else.

Is the turnaround-time taking too long?
On average a clear criminal check should not take more than three days.  Employment and education verification usually takes three to four days.  

If you’re not satisfied with these answers, now is the time to start searching for a new screening company.  Don’t wait until you’re hit with a lawsuit.  

For MBI Worldwide’s free compliance best practices guide to perform the most efficient background checks, please click here.

Kandi Chapman, President and Founder
MBI Worldwide Background Checks