The 5 Questions You Need to Ask Before Selecting a Background Check Company

January 4, 2021
Checkr Editor

Selecting the right background check company is always a big decision, but it matters even more in 2021. Beyond finding a full-service background check provider that can support the legal requirements and best practices of your industry, you’ll also want a partner that buoys your recruiting strategy from data security to hiring surges and beyond.

We’ve seen many changes to the hiring status quo in this last year. A remote-first process is now the norm and applicant volumes are on the rise with potential employees who want to get to work ASAP. In this environment, outdated processes (that still rely on paper applications and scanners) are no longer a solution to get candidates screened and onboarded. And features that used to be ‘take or leave’ like ‘live candidate support’ are now a must.

The question then becomes, how do I future-proof my background check company selection? The good news is that while predicting the future is impossible, planning for it is totally doable. Think ‘agility’, market conditions may change — but your background check should always deliver accurate data and a streamlined candidate experience, fast.  

Here comes the tricky part, many background check companies can look great from the outside, but you need to see and understand what’s under the hood to determine which one is right for your business. We suggest treating this process like a candidate interview, where you ask strategic questions to determine which of the many employment background check companies is the perfect fit for your business.

Never interviewed an employee background check company before? We’ve compiled a list of questions that will make you seem like a seasoned pro.

1. How does this employment background check company prioritize candidate experience? 

Candidate experience often falls to the bottom of the priority list, but it should be at the top. Each time a candidate drops out of the recruiting funnel it represents wasted budget in terms of ad spend, recruiting hours, and employer brand efforts.

Remember, in today’s economy candidates will want to get to work ASAP, and a slow background check process means another company could scoop them up first. The other aspect of candidate experience comes in terms of bandwidth; you don’t want your recruiters to waste time manually updating candidates on their background check, your background check company should do that for you with candidate support and transparency.

To avoid wasted resources, inquire in these specific areas:

  • Do they have an applicant support team?
  • What are their candidate conversion rates?
  • What languages does their support team offer?
  • Is their interface intuitive and mobile friendly?
  • Are they FCRA certified?

At Checkr, a consumer-grade candidate experience is built into the DNA of the product, from an intuitive interface that’s mobile-friendly to live or text support in English and Spanish. FCRA certified and well-versed in the needs of candidates from both on-demand and traditional business, Checkr delivers a consistent experience that boosts applicant conversion.

2. How does this background check company help eliminate bias and maintain consistency in the hiring process?

Today, diversity and inclusion are top of mind for everyone, including background check companies. It’s a large undertaking, and you’ll need to select a partner that can support your efforts with their products.

In hiring and background checks, fairness and equity are not only a matter of company values, they can be a legal requirement.

See if the employee background check company you are considering covers all their bases and goes above and beyond…

  • What kind of AI and techhas this background check company developed to promote fair background check processes?
  • Does this background check company adhere to EEOC regulations and guidelines?
  • What kind of tracking and analytics does this background check company’s platform offer to inform your internal efforts?

Checkr helps you prioritize diversity and inclusion by putting fairness at the heart of your background checks. How? Checkr Assess gives customers the ability to remove irrelevant charges from the background check for each job. Our Candidate Stories product allows candidates to share more about themselves. You can learn the personal stories and context that are usually left out of the background check. For records that should be expunged, we’ve partnered with Lawyaw to build the most affordable efficient expungement service.

3. How does this employment background check company account for ever-changing compliance laws?

High profile data breaches affecting everyone from major retailers to global social media platforms have brought security and compliance to the forefront when considering new vendors, this includes employment background check companies.

You need a background check company that keeps pace with changes to the laws and best practices surrounding compliance. With an agile system, compliance becomes second nature. Ensure the background check company offers the following: 

  • Does this employee background check system have a compliance engine that increases the accuracy of reportable records and reduces risks of compliance violations? 
  • Does this background check company offer continued education for users?
  • Does the company offer a set of resources to help you navigate the complicated world of compliance? 

Checkr helps customers meet compliance standards in their background check process through a combination of cutting edge tech and human review. Our AI-powered system surfaces only reportable records to avoid compliance violations and individualized assessments allow you to easily catalog adjudication notes. Because laws change often and vary by region, we help you leverage dynamic regional workflows.

4. How does this background check company handle seasonal spikes in demand or unexpected seasonal spikes?

The last thing you need to be doing in your busy season is scrapping around to expand your hiring team. Find a background check company that helps you scale with tech (not people) so you can whether hiring surges (planned or unexpected) without sacrificing the quality of your candidate experience or time to hire.

  • Will compliance tasks slow your team down?
  • Does their platform provide workflow automation?
  • Does their platform gather analytics to inform future hiring trends?
  • Can they provide consistent turnaround times even with hiring surges?
  • What is their commitment to quality assurance?
  • How do they manage applicant and customer support?

Whether you are hiring five people or five thousand, Checkr keeps your process consistent with reliable turnaround times. Cut down on screening questions and candidate call volumes with Checkr’s ETA, predict turnaround times to keep your applicants happy and informed. Our easy workflow tools mean you won’t miss a beat with your team or compliance, and you can even use the platform analytics to predict future hiring surges.

5. How does this background check company handle Adverse Action? Are there additional steps or fees involved?

Adverse action is a key to compliance and candidate experience so we are calling it out as its own point here. Your candidates will need to be notified if they are rejected based on a background check. This can be a time-consuming process if you have to do it manually. Consider the following when thinking about how you want to manage adjudication:

  • Does their platform automatically account for regional compliance regulations?
  • Do they automatically generate relevant adverse action notices? Or do you need to send it out manually?
  • How are adverse action costs calculated?

With Checkr, you can manage adjudication and adverse action online. Our tools help you save time and stay compliant with candidate notifications and mandatory waiting period management. We know that adverse action laws vary by region, so we help you tailor your process to what your location requires—all this with no extra charge.

Closing thoughts on selecting a full-service background check company

Times of economic uncertainty teaches us to be strategic with budget allocation. When you select the right full-service background check company, your organization can see real ROI in terms of time to hire, candidate experience, and higher conversion rates.

Remember, every new vendor you bring onto the team is a chance to demonstrate your business acumen to the C-Suite with a stellar choice of partner.

Want to chat more about your background check needs? Checkr can help. Get in touch today

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