Background Checks

BACKGROUND CHECKS

Background checks

Background checks

Definition

By definition, a background check is the investigation of an individual’s history. Specifically, the investigation covers the subject’s personal, financial, medical, and criminal background. This is done through a comprehensive review of both private and public information. These investigations are most often conducted on behalf of employers trying to ensure that their applicants are who they say they are.  An applicant may look great on a résumé, but the information revealed from a thorough background check can help show how the applicant will benefit (or even harm) your company.

Resume and background check

A background check can verify whether the information on a person’s résumé is true or false, and may reveal unsavory information that the individual is trying to hide.  Naturally, positions of greater importance within a company should require more rigorous background checks, but a background check should ultimately provide a better understanding of someone to ensure one can make a well-informed decision.

Basic Background checks

Basic background checks involve the analysis of publically available information about the subject. This includes a Social Security Number scan, reading through the subject’s criminal record, and verifying the employment and education listed in the subject’s application. From there, the need for a deeper analysis depends on the subject in question. An investigator may need to check the subject’s credit, read motor vehicle reports, review the worker’s compensation history, and search the Sex Offender’s Registry. Depending on the job applied for, a review of the applicant’s medical history may also be necessary. When conducted properly, a background check should provide a detailed history of the individual, consisting of information that may not have been brought up in an application or interview.

Employment background check

An employer looking to conduct a background check should carefully interview potential employees. The employer should ensure that the applicant acknowledges the consequences of lying throughout the application process, as a background check will detect any falsified credentials. In addition, the employer may want to ask the applicant about any negative information that might be revealed in a background check. This would give the applicant an opportunity to explain themselves and help give the interviewer peace of mind when making final decisions.

Records are often obtained upon request by the party conducting the investigation. Criminal records are most often obtained directly from law enforcement. When reviewing the past criminal activity of an individual, the severity and recentness of any crimes will most often be taken into account. Obviously, a traffic warrant will not be as significant as theft or kidnapping. Nevertheless, criminal background checks are all-inclusive, and the individual in question would be unable to hide the information maintained by law enforcement offices.

Financial reports

Credit reports are able to be obtained in situations where there is a business necessity to know an individual’s financial background.  If one is applying for a significant position within a large company, it can be expected that credit reports will be obtained as part of a background check.  From credit history, an employer can infer an applicant’s overall sense of responsibility.  Someone with a history of financial misdeeds will find it difficult to apply for positions where one is expected to handle monetary transactions.

For positions that require a level physical fitness, an applicant’s medical records may need to me reviewed. Illnesses and debilitating medical issues are crucial information for an employer.  These kinds of issues may also be brought up in an interview to help the employer gauge the severity of the problems.  Psychiatrist’s records may also provide insight into an applicant’s ability to work under certain conditions.

Lastly, a thorough background check should provide insight into the subject’s personality and lifestyle.   While information from public records can help an employer make influences, an investigator may questions friends and relatives of the subject.   Depending on the situation, eyes-on surveillance is not out of the question.

Background check for personal reason

Background checks, however, are not exclusive to employers. There exist situations where one may need to learn more information about the people in their life.  Individuals looking to conduct a background check on relatives, friends, or themselves are able to employ services to conduct the investigation.  One’s next-door neighbor may be a convicted felon or one’s husband could be cheating.  A nanny hired to care for a child may be a registered sex offender. This information may never be known unless a thorough background check is performed.  While a background check done for personal reasons may not have the business necessity needed to grant access to certain records, there will still exist enough information to provide a detailed report.

Regardless of the reason behind a background check, the best option for interested parties is to hire a private investigator. A certified private investigator has instant access to vast amount of criminal and financial documents that may take weeks to access on one’s own. They would be able to pinpoint the information that is most helpful, and will know exactly where and how to obtain it.

Automated background checks

There exist automated background checks online, and while the information gained from those is often accurate, the systems may not be able to obtain the kinds of information one is looking for.

A private investigator would be able to surveil a subject for an extended period of time and keep detailed notes the individual’s activities.

They would be able to access and analyze documents that do not exist online. In addition, maintaining contact with the investigator will help ensure that he or she obtains the exact information that is needed.

Hiring a professional private investigator is an excellent way to save time, money, and heartache when making major decisions.  Not only do private investigators provide accurate results, but an investigator is able to find far more information than an automated system can provide.

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