Bad Background Checks Equal Bad Hiring Decisions
December 14, 2010
Imagine that you about to get your dream job when you find out that a shoddy background check incorrectly indicates that you are a convicted felon.
Yesterday, I read two stories that dealt with this very issue. In both cases, the employer made adverse hiring decisions based on criminal records that did not belong to the candidate (see stories below).
Making a hiring decision when adverse information is found on a background check is no easy task. It often takes careful consideration weighing several factors such as the severity of the information and its correlation to the position you trying to fill. That degree of difficulty increases infinitely when the background check you are reviewing reveals information about your candidate that actually belongs to someone else. And now, not only are you exposing yourself to a bad hiring decision you are also opening the door to potential litigation and unwanted public attention.
I don’t think employers go out of their way to invite situations such as these, so here’s a tip to avoid them in the future.
Ask your employment screening company if they verify adverse information before it is reported. If a criminal record is found, do they confirm that the identifiers on the record match your applicant? Do they ensure that the information is accurate and up to date? In both of these incidents and a host of others that are publicly exposed every day, taking these simple measures would strictly limit the possibility of such occurrences.