How to Balance the Need for Thorough Background Screening with Privacy Concerns

Background Screening

How to Balance the Need for Thorough Background Screening with Privacy Concerns

When the time comes to fill a vacant position, whether that be in a major corporation, small business, or startup, all prospective job candidates should undergo a thorough background screening. This practice minimizes a company’s chances of onboarding employees who are not a good fit. It also lowers the chances of them being legally liable for negligent hiring.

Compliance is Key

Thorough background screenings can help companies hire the best candidates and ensure safety in the workplace. That said, it is imperative that a thorough background screening be done strictly according to government guidelines so as to not compromise a candidate’s privacy and rights. For example, according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), employers are not allowed to ask job candidates for additional background information solely because they are of a particular race or ethnicity. Additionally, unless an employer extends an official job offer, they cannot ask for or conduct a background screening to review a candidate’s medical information.

Trust Someone with Background Screening Expertise

Most companies now use third-party companies to do background screenings on potential new hires rather than doing it themselves.  Those that do, according to federal laws enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), are required to follow specific guidelines, which include the following:

  • They must receive written permission from the job candidate before authorizing the third-party company to run a background screening.
  • They must furnish the job candidate with a copy of the background report, a summary of their rights, and contact information of the third-party background reporting company if they didn’t get the position.

Running a thorough background screening on prospective job candidates improves the odds of hiring the right person to work in your organization. But doing so while respecting the privacy concerns of job candidates and not running afoul of state and federal laws is no easy task.  And this is why many businesses opt to hire third-party background services companies, like Private Eyes, a leader in comprehensive pre-employment screening services, to do the heavy lifting for them.

Have questions?  Speak to a Private Eyes expert for more information.