What Do Employers Look For In A Background Check?

During a background check, an employer considers past employment history and criminal history equally important. In addition, a third-party agency may contact the educational or licensing institutions of the individual to ensure that the individual has completed the courses required and that their licenses are current and up-to-date. Some employers also request copies of the individual’s educational records. Regardless of the method, employers are becoming more sophisticated in their background checks.

Job-related information

Employers may ask applicants for background information before hiring them, depending on the company. However, these background checks are not legal and must be performed with the applicant’s consent. Furthermore, employers cannot ask questions about a person’s race, ethnicity, or financial status.

Before a hiring decision is made, a background check will reveal whether a job applicant has a criminal history. Even if a person were dismissed or acquitted, criminal convictions would appear on the background check. These records may be problematic for a company concerned about liability, but a criminal record can also show up in the background check. Therefore, it is essential to review the background check results before carefully deciding. After reviewing the results, employers should follow up with the applicant to ensure they are satisfied with the information provided. However, if a person’s record is not favorable, the employer should immediately rescind the employment offer.


While most positions require some work experience, education is crucial for many roles. Verification of education typically involves a yes-or-no response. It confirms the highest level of education completed, the date and type of degree earned, and the GPA for some positions. Therefore, education verification is an integral part of the background check process.

In addition to verifying where a candidate went to school, an education background check can reveal more information about the candidate’s past educational history. It may include verification of the dates and schools the applicant attended, their degrees, and whether they received honors or not. GPA information is usually not reported by consumer reporting agencies, but employers can ask for official transcripts from educational institutions. This information is protected by the Fair Credit Reporting Act, which limits the amount of information that a consumer reporting agency can share with an employer.

Criminal record

What exactly do employers look for in a background check? Generally, criminal records are listed on a background check. While employers can use an illegal form to disqualify someone from a job, it’s not always the only factor in hiring someone. Misdemeanors, such as drunk driving, can also come up. The decision to hire someone with a criminal past depends on the type of position they are applying for and the standards for hiring.

While some employers don’t use a background check to make decisions, most of them do. Employers are usually reluctant to hire a person with a criminal history and are often on the lookout for red flags that should alert them to the candidate. Almost 93% of employers conduct background checks that include criminal records. These investigations include the nature of the crime and how long ago the conviction occurred.

Credit history

While most employers don’t care about your finances, your credit report can play an essential role in your application. For example, they might use it to prevent application fraud and determine whether you are responsible for your money. In addition, some high-risk jobs, like government positions, require a security clearance. So even if you are responsible for your money, your credit report may reflect that. For this reason, you should prepare yourself to answer questions about your credit history.

While employers often check your credit history when you apply for a job, there are times when they’ll match it. For example, a credit report shows a person’s history of borrowing money and paying it back. Many employers think that this information is an excellent indicator of their character, especially if you’re applying for a position involving large amounts of money.

Drug testing

One of the most common questions employers ask about candidates is if they have undergone drug testing. A pre-employment drug test can detect alcohol, marijuana, amphetamines, cocaine, and opiates. It can also test for benzodiazepines, barbiturates, methaqualone, and propoxyphene. In addition, employers typically pay employees for their time spent undergoing the test.

Depending on the position, drug tests may be required by an employer. These tests can detect drugs in hair, saliva, and blood. While urine tests can detect drugs for up to a week, saliva and hair can detect drugs immediately. However, it’s important to note that drug testing is not always foolproof. For example, a candidate can dilute or purchase synthetic urine to avoid a positive test. In addition, oxidizing agents in urine can break up detectable amounts. Fortunately, employers can use an instant reader to expedite the process.

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