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2 min read

Believe It When You See It: Signs of an Effective Background Check [PART 1]

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When you look at activities in your life it’s pretty clear when something is working. You know your washer and dryer are doing its job when your clothes are clean. Your coffee pot is keeping up with (high) demand when it makes a hot cup for you in the morning. But some things are less clear. How about your background check program? How do you know when your process for screening candidates is really successful? As important as this is, most of us don’t even think about it until a formal program analysis is requested – maybe once or twice a year.

When you’re busy juggling a million things, having that “ding” or flashing light tell you everything is done can be helpful. Clear signs that your background screening program is effective helps increase your confidence in the workflow, the background information you receive, and the hiring decisions you make. Getting a good gauge of effectiveness doesn’t have to come down to complicated data analysis either. There are three places you should be able to see the success of your background screening program in action with a quick glance:

  1. Itemized invoices (and not for the reasons you think)
  2. Management reports from your screening partner
  3. Your final background check results

Periodic monitoring: Clear-cut search and scope details evident in invoices

It may come as a surprise to some, but invoices are helpful for more than paying the bills. A detailed, itemized invoice can also be a great tool to tell you how your background screening program is operating. Itemized invoices are a good way to see detailed information on your program in action, and Verified Credentials provides billing tools that simply and clearly segment billing by location, tracking numbers, candidates, and products. With just a glance you should be able to see exactly what you ordered.  

You may be wondering, what exactly should I be looking for on my invoices? Visible signs of an effective background check may include: 

  • You see all names – those found by the Social Security Trace and provided by the candidate – used on multiple searches.
  • If your package should be looking at multiple locations based on the current and past residences, multiple jurisdictions should be popping up under criminal history searches and more.
  • All of the background checks you expect in a package are listed.

Simply looking at this information can tell you if you are making the most of you background check. So, if a Social Security Trace shows the candidate may have used another name than the one they gave you, that name could also appear under other searches performed. In addition, a Social Security Trace might reveal an address that was not provided by the candidate. The jurisdiction for the additional address could be searched and this would show on your invoice.

Other things you may want to look for are itemized invoices that list originating sources. If you receive a potential county criminal record from a National Criminal Database Search, you should see this record confirmed through a County Criminal History Search. 

Your line-item assessment of getting every element you expect from an effective background check is typically unmistakable when you look at your invoices. These factors indicate a robust and thoughtful background screening program, which is a great sign that it is effective. 

Not seeing all names and addresses on your invoice? Get in touch with us to help you review your statements or reports that don’t add up.     

In part two of our series, we discuss how reports and results can signify the productiveness of a background screening program. Read more 

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