What you Should Know about Background Checks
It’s well known that Americans are quitting their jobs in record-breaking numbers. But did you realize that American employers are also hiring in record-breaking numbers? It makes sense since someone has to fill the newly opened jobs.
Of course, all this hiring has led to a surge in pre-employment background checks. Pre-employment checks are useful, but they can be confusing. So here’s some information about what they are and what you should expect when you apply for a job.
What to Expect
For a background check to be started, you’ll need to sign to provide signed authorization. You’ll also need to provide detailed information, such as your full name, date of birth, and Social Security Number, as well as a list of recent addresses. You may also need to provide information for any applicable certifications you have.
Generally speaking, a background check takes 48 – 72 hours. This time will vary depending on where you’ve lived, how often you’ve moved, and if you have ever been the target of identity theft. It’s a good idea to let the company know this upfront before they start a background check in case there are any concerns.
Types of Background Checks
Pre-employment background checks can vary by industry, but here are the most common ones you’re likely to encounter.
A criminal background check is a check of national, state, and local criminal databases, such as the National Criminal Record Database and the Sex Offender Registry. You’ll also be subject to state and county criminal record checks.
This background check compares your full legal name, date of birth, and Social Security number to information on record with the Social Security Administration to verify your identity. For this reason, you should provide your name as it appears on your Social Security card, rather than your nickname (i.e., Thomas rather than Tom) or your spouse’s name if you haven’t changed your last name with the Social Security Administration. The identity check is generally included with any background check.
If you’re going to be in a position where you will have access or control over money, most employers will want to review your credit report. This is not the same as a credit check. A pre-employment credit check will show your payment history and your debt ratio rather than your credit score.
Most potential employers who will expect you to drive a company vehicle will want to review your motor vehicle record, commonly referred to as an MVR. An MVR will show the types of vehicles you’re licensed to operate as well as your driving history, such as accidents, tickets, and suspensions.
Other types of background checks
Other types of background checks that may be conducted include the verification of education. Most employers won’t be concerned with your GPA unless you’re a new graduate, but they will want to confirm the information on your resume, so make sure your resume is accurate. Employers are also likely to verify your professional credentials, such as a law degree, CPA, or medical license. If you’ve served in the military, a potential employer can verify the terms of your discharge. Additionally, some industries, such as finance, childcare, gaming, and medicine, require a fingerprint check.
Contingent Job Offer
Companies don’t perform them for candidates that aren’t considered likely to get a job offer. It’s not unusual for employers to offer a job to a candidate contingent on a successful background check. If you get a contingent job offer, it’s important to realize that the job has been offered to you on the assumption that there are no problems with your background check. If you have any concerns, you would be wise to hold off on resignation until the background is complete.
Let Optimum Staffing Solutions Guide You
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