For what purposes can you can use background checks?

It was hard to obtain information about someone’s education, work history, criminal records, military records, and much more in the past. Today, you can go online and get background check reports in just minutes. There are even some online sites where you can get unlimited background checks for any purpose. Here are some options you may want to consider when you need to do background checks.

Types of Background Checks

There are many types of background checks that you can perform as an employer. Here is a list of the most common background checks. There are various background check sites, here is a list of the best ones.


A new employee is an investment in time, money, and resources. As an employer, you need to know if you are making the right investment when you hire someone. You may have a method of conducting background checks. Your goal as an employer is to get the information you need to have an accurate overview of a candidate before you offer them a job.

You need to become familiar with federal and state labor laws on background checks. Every state has laws regarding when and how you can conduct a background check. States also have disclosure requirements employers must follow after they perform a background check. Penalties for not following these laws can result in steep fines.

Criminal History

A criminal history check is the most frequently used background check that employers use. As an employer, you need to know if a candidate for a position may pose a potential threat to you, your employees, and your customer. You want to perform a criminal history check if your employees work with children, the elderly, the disabled, and other vulnerable populations. Criminal record checks include:

•Federal, state, and county criminal court records
•Domestic and global terrorist watch lists
•Sex offender registries

Employment Qualification Check

You need to know a job applicant’s prior work experience before you offer them a job. An employment qualification check allows you to look at their work history, including:

•Length of employment per job
•Job title and salary
•Job duties
•Reason for leaving a job

Checking a job applicant’s work history allows an employer to verify the job they held and show how much integrity and loyalty they showed their previous employer.

Education Verification

It is not uncommon for job applicants to boast about their academic credentials or educational achievement. An education check enables you to verify that an applicant’s educational achievements that they list on their resume are accurate.

You can contact the human resource department of the applicant’s previous employer or the administrative department of the educational institution listed on the applicant’s resume. You should know that attendance is not the same as graduation. You need to determine if they took the college courses that make them eligible for a position if they only attended college.

Reference Check

An employer needs to know what an applicant is like at work and away from work. References are important for employers to see if an applicant has the temperament and work ethic for the new job. The employer can ask about an applicant’s past performance and fact check statements the applicant made during the interview.

Drug and Alcohol Screening

Employers want trustworthy employees who have a healthy state of mind and can be trusted to do their job unimpaired. They will screen applicants for drugs and alcohol to ensure the right people are filling the positions. Some jobs that require a lot of driving or aviation need to have periodic drug and alcohol screenings to keep the public and other employees safe.

A drug and alcohol screening can consist of a urinalysis, hair test, or a Breathalyzer. An employer must give an applicant notice that a drug and alcohol screening is necessary for employment. The applicant must also consent to the screening.

Credit Check

Employers also need permission from the applicant to do a credit check. A credit background check will show if an applicant is fiscally responsible. Fiscal responsibility is important if an applicant is applying for a job in the financial services industry or where employees handle a lot of money.

A credit check involves looking at an applicant’s credit history from the three credit reporting agencies: Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. Check with the laws in your state because some states and municipalities prohibit employers from using credit reports to make hiring decisions.

Social Media Check

Checking social media accounts in recent years has become a popular way for employers to determine the suitability of a job applicant. It is helpful to find general information about an applicant through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, or Tik Tok. Yet, information about a job applicant on social media can be inaccurate. Employers should still rely on more accurate criminal and credit background checks to learn more about a job applicant.

A pre-employment background check is a necessary part of the screening process for job applicants. This process helps employers exclude potential employees with character issues that can lead to problems in the workplace. Employers need to follow all state and federal labor laws to avoid financial penalties for non-compliance. Whether the information is for your safety or the safety of your business, using a background check can give you peace of mind.


Leave a Comment