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Is There a List of Common Red Flags to Look for on a Background Check?

Common Red Flags to Look for on a Background Check

You’re pre-screening employees in Buffalo, NY. So, what types of results should you worry about? Here’s a list of common red flags to look for on a background check.

Potential Red Flags on a Background Check

Identification Discrepancies

You want to make sure the person you’re hiring is who you think it is. Most background checks begin with a name, social security number and birthdate. If there are discrepancies, the person may be trying to cover something up. However, mistaken identity, identity theft, and even typos could be to blame. Therefore, it’s important to review and confirm this information with your candidates.

Resume Inconsistencies

Sometimes candidates exaggerate or outright lie on their application materials. They may claim to have a certification they don’t have or extend dates of employment to cover a resume gap. Unless there’s a reasonable explanation, these red flags are particularly problematic. Not only is there a chance your applicant isn’t qualified but also, they’ve already shown themselves to be dishonest.

A Criminal History

A criminal background will make any employer nervous. Yet, keep in mind, you cannot automatically eliminate a candidate simply because they committed a crime in the past. State laws, such as NYS Article 23-A require companies to evaluate situations on a case-by-case basis. For example, it wouldn’t be reasonable to deny someone a retail job because of a single, five-year-old public intoxication misdemeanor.

Bad Driving Records

If your employees drive as part of their job or operate company-owned vehicles, you’ll want to run a motor vehicle record search. Most people collect a traffic ticket or two throughout their lifetimes. Nevertheless, a DWI or a history of traffic violations should raise concerns.

Poor Credit

As with driving records, few people have perfect credit. Therefore, look for troublesome trends and excessive amounts of debt rather than worrying about a few past-due payments. Of course, credit checks for employees who deal with company or customers’ finances need to be more rigorous.

Unenthusiastic References

In a perfect world, you hope your candidate’s references all give glowing reviews. If this doesn’t work out, it may or may not be a red flag. Once again, look for troublesome trends as well as issues that could impact job performance. For instance, if two out of three references mention a sales representative often loses his temper, this could be a problem.

Failed Drug Screenings

In many safety-sensitive industries, including those regulated by Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, employees must pass a drug screening. In other cases, companies may eliminate this part of the background check altogether. The recent legalization of marijuana in multiple states has accelerated the trend toward less stringent drug screenings.

Is Your Company Having Trouble Understanding the Results of a Background Check?

At Metrodata Services, we’ll help you conduct pre-employment screenings AND interpret the results. Don’t make hiring decisions based on guesswork, let the experts catch potential red flags. Learn more about the benefits of partnering with Metrodata today!

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