Do you follow through on a check before or after you make the offer?
According to Business.com, 53 percent of applicants list untruths on their resume. That’s a hefty number and one you should be aware of if you’re a business owner or a hiring manager. That number is a good reason to run a background check on every applicant that you’re considering for a position. Without it, you have a more than 50 percent chance of making a bad hiring decision. So the question isn’t whether you should be screening potential employees, but when you should be screening. And the answer is actually an individualized one. Let’s take a look.
Running background checks before making the offer
Depending on what state your business is in, a pre-offer background check may be prohibited. But if your state doesn’t fall into this category, there are several aspects to the pre-offer checks that you will want to consider. Many companies prefer to run screenings on candidates before offering the position because this allows them to avoid the need to revoke the offer and running checks on several people at the same time allows them to narrow down their top choices. Of course, running screenings on multiple candidates at one time may increase your cost, but to many business owners, the benefits of weeding out those with problematic histories is worth the additional cost. Things to keep in mind if you go the pre-offer route are:
Written authorization: You are required to obtain written authorization from each candidate for running a background screening.
Required paperwork: The FCRA requires you to send pre-adverse notices and a copy of the consumer report to all applicants.
Limitation of screenings: Pre-offer checks can only screen the applicant’s identification, education, references, and criminal history. Their medical or worker’s compensation history cannot be screened.
Discerning between top candidates: Running a pre-offer check on a few top candidates can assist in making the determination of which one should get the offer.
Time savings: Running a pre-offer screen during the interview process can save time by getting the ball rolling so when results come in, you’ll be ready to make the offer to the right candidate.
Running background checks after the offer
Screening top candidates after making the job offer is often the preferred route for employers. This is because of the obvious cost savings of just screening one person versus several at a time. Of course, if you’ve made an offer and then discover that your candidate has a less-than-stellar past, you’ll have the uncomfortable task of informing them that your offer is no longer on the table.
Things to keep in mind when screening after you’ve made the offer are:
Starting over: If the screening comes back with a negative report, you’ll have to begin the entire interviewing process over again.
Paperwork: Although there is less paperwork involved when you screen less people, the FCRA still requires you to send a pre and post adverse notice to your applicant as well as a copy of the consumer report.
Less expensive: Post offer screenings reduce your cost since you’re only running on one candidate.
Finding the right people for your company is much less arduous when you run a background check that ensures each one is who they say they are and has the experience, education, and skills that they claim to. With the prevalence of untruthful information provided on candidate’s resumes, a screening into their history is key and whether you choose a post-offer or pre-offer process, you’ll be able to rest assured that you’ve made the right hiring decision.
At Sentinel Background Checks, we offer a myriad of screening services for your business and are happy to customize a plan that will be best suited to your organization’s hiring process. Give us a call to discuss your needs today.