The 5-step guide to starting your company’s background check process

As your business grows, your team must expand to support new demands. Hiring can be an exciting process that adds bright new perspectives to your processes and bolsters your company’s integrity. However, uninformed hiring choices can have a negative impact on your team. So, deciding who to trust with the growth of your organization is crucial.

Pre-employment background checks offer valuable information that allows you to make more knowledgeable choices about your future employees. If your business has a minimal background screening process or no screening process at all, you should consider formalizing your background check policies before you make your next hiring decision. An official background check process makes hiring more streamlined and offers transparency and honesty to applicants.

Follow this step-by-step guide to create a reliable background check process for your company.

Step 1: Take inventory of your needs

Before you can choose a background check company or move forward with specific screening policies, you must decide what you want to get out of a background check process. First, identify reasons why you should screen applicants for various positions. Different jobs may require different levels of restriction and security. You can then tailor your background check policies to your company’s different job descriptions.

Also, you should decide early on how much you are able to budget for background checks. It’s less costly to pay for diligent background checks than to deal with potential increased liability of not screening.

Step 2: Understand and comply with background check laws

Job applicants have distinct rights during the background process. While a background check company will help you comply with laws, it is important for you to understand the rights and privacy privileges of your applicants.

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is the primary regulator of how reports are used by employers. The FCRA ensures that applicants are aware you are screening them and places responsibilities on the employer to protect the privacy of applicants.

Step 3: Clarify your policies

Once you recognize your company’s background check needs, team up with your legal counsel to mockup an applicant screening policy. That policy should inform applicants about which background check company is running the checks, what types of screenings will be run, how the information in their report will affect decisions and how disputes will be handled. It is also a good practice to offer applicants with an explanation of which offenses will bar them from certain positions.

Step 4: Find a company that fits your needs

When choosing a company to run background checks for you, consider the role you want the company to play in your hiring process. Full-service background check companies can be reliable partners throughout hiring that will help you interpret results and ensure you make informed decisions. Online background check services offer quick results but are less hands-on and may not be FCRA compliant.

No matter what you choose, verify the service you enlist is compliant with FCRA and accredited by the Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA).

Step 5: Know what to do with information from a report

Based on the background check policy your company created, you will have guidelines on how to respond to certain charges on an applicant’s report. If you decide to remove an applicant from consideration due to information on their report, you are taking adverse action. When taking adverse action, you must notify the applicant of your decision and provide reasoning for it.

If you have any further questions about how to proceed, contact your background check company. Also, you can get in touch with One Source’s Client Relations Ream today.

When You’re Ready to Run a Background Check, Start Here

Everything you need to do before launching the background check process

Whether you are an employer looking into the history of a potential new hire, a volunteer coordinator wanting to verify the background of a volunteer or anyone else who could need a background check, there are a few important things you must do before you receive a report. Once you decide on a background check, follow these simple steps to ensure the check runs smoothly and ethically.

Choose the type of background check

There is a wide variety of common background checks, and each type provides slightly different information to serve a unique purpose. Clarify your purpose for running a background check and choose the type that will best meet your needs.

  • Pre-employment Screening: Employers can run background checks specifically designed to minimize risk for their business. Pre-employment checks can include confirmation of work history, education history, a credit report, criminal records and driving records. In certain situations, a drug screening and a review of an applicant’s social media use can be included.
  • Volunteer Screening: Nonprofits, schools and other organizations that require volunteers can maintain their integrity and keep their communities safe with background checks. Volunteer checks are just as thorough as pre-employment checks, but they are meant to fit the budget and needs of volunteer organizations.
  • Certified Contractors Background Checks: If you are hiring contractors, you can make sure they are screened to the same high standard you require for your staff, while staying compliant with the FCRA. A certified contractor check includes a criminal check, optional drug screening and a check of compliance with One Source Certified Contractor (OSCC) guidelines.

For more comprehensive information, contact One Source Client Relations.

Get authorization from the person being checked

To move forward with a background check, you must receive consent from the person who will be checked. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) mandates that a Disclosure and Authorization form must be signed before a background check, and if it is not authorized you could face legal consequences. Notify those you intend to background check and explain to them how the results of the check will be used so they can be informed before they sign off.

One Source offers a compliant Disclosure and Authorization form you can download here.

Gather identification information

The insight you need to obtain from the person being reviewed can vary based on the company you are running the check through. For most background check companies, you need to provide a full name and a unique identifying number such as a birthdate, Social Security number or driver’s license number. A background check company will tell you up front if they need any further information.

Once you complete these tasks, you can let a background check company do the rest of the work. Background checks take a few days to complete. To learn more about the background check process or to get started, contact One Source Client Relations.

Frequently Asked Questions about Pre-Employment Background Checks

Finding and hiring the best candidate for a position at any company can be a long and tedious but worthwhile process. No matter how your business chooses to structure its hiring, background checks should be a crucial part of the system. They provide security, mitigate risk and help you choose a candidate with confidence.

We answered a list of the most frequently asked questions about pre-employment background checks, so the next time you’re hiring, you can hit the ground running.

How long does a background check take?

Typically, a background check can take 2 to 4 business days. The exact amount of time until you get a report back can vary if there are unforeseen complications or if additional screenings are requested.

It can take an instant to search internet databases, but to search real-time, original-source records, as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) requires, it may take longer. One Source delivers 96 percent of background checks in 24-48 hours.

What do I need to run a background check on an applicant?

According to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), you must have a signed release form from every applicant you would like to screen. Your applicants must know you are running a background check and must consent to the screening. You can download a copy of our background check Disclosure and Authorization form here.

What information will I get from a background check?

One Source’s TotalCheck products can provide you a comprehensive and verified report that includes:

  •  Verification of an applicant’s information.
  • A county/statewide criminal history report.
  • A supplemental search of multi-court jurisdictional criminal record databases.
  • A nationwide federal criminal report, cross-referenced with the Federal Bureau of Prisons’ databases.
  • A search of the national sex offender registries.
  • A check of global watchlists.

How do I review the results of a background check?

When an applicant’s background check is complete, you will receive an email with an embedded link to the report. The link is password protected to keep your applicant’s data secure.

Why should I hire a background check company?

A consistent and compliant partnership with a background check company can make the entire hiring process easier. One Source has carefully developed background screening methods to ensure accuracy and save companies time. And if you ever run into a problem with a background check, it is useful to have an expert partner like One Source who can quickly answer your questions. When you hire a background check company, you can maintain clarity, compliance and confidence through the hiring process and get a fantastic new hire to work ASAP.

The Top 3 Reasons Nonprofit Volunteers Need Background Checks

To nonprofit organizations, volunteers are so much more than temporary helpers. They’re the lifeblood that lets a nonprofit thrive. They are administrators, fundraisers, cheerleaders, advocates and anything else that can drive an organization’s purpose forward.

The actions of volunteers make or break a nonprofit’s success. Genuine, reliable volunteers can boost a nonprofit’s integrity and increase its impact, but dishonest volunteers put nonprofits’ finances and reputations at risk.

So, how do you make sure your organization recruits excellent volunteers? Background checks. Here are the top 3 reasons nonprofit volunteers need background checks:

Public Safety

Volunteers who assist with events, fundraisers and outreach efforts are the face of an organization. Their exchanges with the public define how the organization is perceived, and it is the duty of volunteers to ensure everyone is comfortable and safe.

Running background checks on potential volunteers gives you peace of mind that your volunteers will treat the communities you serve with respect. Many nonprofits work with vulnerable populations like children and the elderly, and volunteers who interact with them must be screened. If an incident occurs and you did not background check your volunteers, you could be held responsible for the incident. Background checks keep the community you serve safe and allow you to trust your volunteers.

Volunteer Dedication

In order to grow your volunteer base with caring, dedicated volunteers, you must build a positive volunteer work environment. If volunteers steal, lie or take advantage of an organization, distrust becomes rooted in its culture.

Potentially wonderful volunteers will be wary of participating in the organization for fear of an unpleasant experience.

Nonprofits must make volunteers feel valued and secure to earn their loyalty. Background checks help you make informed decisions about which volunteers will foster a constructive work environment. Once you establish your organization as a great place to volunteer, your number of dedicated volunteers will increase.

Reputation Management

When people donate to a nonprofit, they trust the money they give will be used wisely. When people bring their families to a nonprofit’s event, they trust they will be safe. Public trust is required to maintain a nonprofit’s relevance. However, one wrong move from a volunteer can wreck the public’s confidence and leave the nonprofit in ruin.

Background checks allow you to verify your volunteers are ethical. Volunteers who handle donations honestly and treat others kindly will boost trust in your organization. People can tell when an organization has integrity. Build a good reputation through your volunteers, and people will be proud to support you.

Volunteers can be your nonprofit’s greatest asset. They can promote your purpose while giving your organization credibility. One Source’s comprehensive background check services help you choose your volunteers with confidence. Follow the link to learn more about One Source.