Criminal Background Checks
Safety and Security for Your Business
While finding great talent is certainly at the forefront of hiring decisions, protecting and safeguarding your business—your reputation, your employees, your assets, and your customers—is also an important consideration. As a result, criminal background checks are increasingly becoming a common component of the hiring process. A criminal record check will unearth major and minor criminal activities, including felony convictions, fraud, and sex crimes. At the same time, it’s important to acknowledge that not all crimes are created equal nor are they all relevant to the employment position at hand. When using criminal background information, it’s necessary to protect your business while not creating barriers to employment for blemished individuals who wish to enter the workforce.
What is included in a criminal background check?
A typical comprehensive criminal background check will include searches of the following:
- Criminal databases—national, federal, and state
- Sex offender registries
- County criminal court records and databases
- Domestic and foreign watch lists
Work with your background screening service provider closely to define the type of criminal background search required. Using a professional screening company will ensure that you comply with local, state, and federal background check laws and regulations.
What positions require a criminal background check?
Be thoughtful in your use of criminal background checks. Some positions are mandated by law to require a background check. Examples include the following:
- Childcare and education staff working with children
- Healthcare workers, including nurses, doctors, and home health care providers
- Financial services providers such as financial advisors, credit experts, bank tellers, etc.
- Government service workers such as police officers, fire department, and mayors
- IT employees, including systems managers and computer analysts
In general, jobs that place individuals in positions of power, in regular contact with vulnerable individuals, or in a position to access critical data and assets will require criminal background checks.
Beyond the checks required by law, to help you avoid discrimination and prevent passing up good hires for minor indiscretions, carefully define by position what type of criminal activity will be disqualifying. For example, drivers require a clean driving record or employees who come in direct contact with cash need a record clear of theft or fraud convictions. This type of considered approach, as opposed to one-size-fits-all tactics, will contribute to safe and fair hiring decisions.
Criminal Background Checks: Improving Trust and Safety
Ultimately, the purpose of criminal background checks is to determine whether a potential new hire poses a threat to your business. Using background checks wisely will help you create an atmosphere of trust and safety in your workplace.