Let’s face it. The economy is still a mess and people aren’t finding jobs fast enough. Given this fact, there are a lot of people looking to place the blame for these developments. And has been the case for the last several years, many are focusing on employment screening and background checks. I won’t say that all who oppose background check are flat out wrong in every instance, but all too frequently they rely on myths, misconceptions and urban legends to support their arguments.
Here is my list of the most commonly held misconceptions about employment background checks:
- Background Checks Are the Reason Unemployment Rates Are High - We’ll remove all politics from this one and simply state that a large contributor to unemployment besides a slow economic recovery is that EMPLOYERS are having a difficult time finding qualified people for the jobs that are available.
- Employers Use Background Checks As An Excuse Not to Hire Someone - As Bob Barker might say, “The Price is wrong.” Remember, company’s spend an awful lot of time, money and effort to find the right candidate for the job. Why would they go out of their way not to hire the people they have invested these efforts in?
- Anyone with a Criminal Record Will Never Be Hired - As Alex Trebek might say, “Oh sorry!”. There are over 65 million people with criminal records in this country. If all of those people were out of work, unemployment rates would be 6 times higher than they are now. According to our 2012 Background Screening Trends study, less than 10% of applicants with criminal records are denied employment.
- Most Employers Pull All Applicant’s Reports - As Richard Dawson would say, “Survey says . . . buzzzz!”. See SHRM study which reveals that only 13% of employers indicated they run credit on all applicants.
- Employers Use Credit Score to Determine Employment Eligibility - As Pat Sajak would say, “‘Lose a Turn”‘ You were so close.” Employers use what is referred to as an “Employment Credit Report” which does not include a credit score or account numbers.
- Poor Credit Will Immediately Disqualify a Candidate - As Regis Philbin would say, “Is that your final answer?” If employers only hired people with good credit, they’d hardly be able to hire anyone.
- Applicants Aren’t Give a Chance to Dispute Findings - As Simon Cowell would say, “Seriously, that was awful.” By law, employers must provide a consumer with a free copy of their background check and allow them up to 30 days to dispute the results.
- Employers Demand Passwords to Candidates’ Social Networking Sites - As Burt Convy would say, “The password is ‘Incorrect’”. While this has been in the news as of late, you will be hard pressed to find anyone doing this. And the backlash to employers that do this, is enough to discourage them for considering it. Check out a story we posted about the city of Bozeman, MT
Guest post written by Nick Fishman, Chief Marketing Officer at EmployeeScreenIQ. Nick's postings on this site are his own and don't necessarily represent the opinions of HRmarketer or other staff members.
Labels: background checks, background screening