What Determines if You Pass a Background Check?

Reliable and thorough background check processes help companies find out what they need to know about potential hires, but how they process the information is up to them, as is the final decision. It’s important to be aware of red flags and the impact they might have on an applicant’s qualifications. Screening services like CheckPeople, who know the ins and outs of background checks, can help you recognize red flags and make the best hire. We list the major ones below.

Numerous Short-term Jobs

Temporary or seasonal work is one thing, but a history of short-lived jobs doesn’t look good on a resume. It might mean the person had to quit or were fired or their enthusiasm for new jobs is brief, and they get bored or unhappy with work easily. Your business needs more enduring and dependable employees, so you’ll probably go wrong with a candidate like this.

Unemployment Gaps

If it looks like unemployment is a pattern for an individual, they might not be a good fit. Multiple employment gaps could mean the person is unreliable, difficult to work with, or simply can’t hold down a job.

One or two gaps shouldn’t be a cause for concern. A lot of people have them on their resumes. There are many reasons for gaps: you got sick, you decided to take a new career path, or you took time off to care for a child or sick relative.

Inconsistencies in Qualifications and Work Experience

Inconsistency is a major red flag as well, and a highly common one. It looks bad when the information you get from a background check is different from what the candidate provided. The candidate may have fabricated experience or qualifications to make themselves look more appealing. It’s important to proceed cautiously when you catch wind of their embellishments. This is character insight that requires serious thought even if the person seems qualified in other areas.

Criminal History

Criminal record checks are a critical and mandatory part of any background screening. As an employer, you must be aware of a potential staff member’s criminal history. The fact that not every incident will prevent you from hiring them is irrelevant here. You don’t want your organization to be held liable if you skip the criminal background check and your hire commits a crime at the workplace.

Passing a check isn’t always contingent on a clean slate. For instance, you might be able to overlook a minor incident or a decade-old one. Your candidate may have been arrested for something, but that doesn’t mean they were convicted. The key aspect to watch for here is how honest they are when asked about their criminal history. Lying about it in the interview or application could be a deal-breaker and being forthright is definitely a good sign. It shows the person can be trusted going forward.

Little or no Relevant Experience

Just like making up experience is a red flag, so is the opposite. You might encounter an applicant who’s omitted relevant jobs. Normally, people want to put their best faces forward when seeking employment. The fact that relevant experience is missing might mean they don’t want you to know about those jobs for some reason. Always ask about such things. The candidate may be able to explain why the information is missing. To get as many details as possible, follow up on any previous jobs you learn about.

Declining a Background Check

The way someone approaches a background check is often telling. So much so, in fact, that you might be able to learn more from that than from the report itself. Candidates have the right to refuse a check, but this could be a red flag, indicating they’re hiding something bad. Every employer wants to hire reliable and honest people.

If your candidate answers questions about their employment, financial, or criminal history in a calm and collected manner during the interview, it shows they’re reliable and qualified. On the other hand, a person who tries to hide relevant aspects of their background might not be suitable for your company.

You need as much information as you can get surrounding the red flags we’ve discussed. Consider any explanations or context you have for them. The best hiring decisions are well-informed ones.