Checking the criminal records of future hires is a common practice in many organizations. What is the purpose of such record check? And to what extent do these reports influence the company’s hiring decision? 

Let us look at some considerations for a Criminal record Check process:

Why do we need a record check?

To ensure we hire reliable employees. To ensure the safety of others who will interact with the employee. To verify candidates’ information for truthfulness and accuracy. 

What past record do you check?

Companies check variety of records based on the position they are hiring for. These include criminal records, credit reports, drug testing, past employment references, ID verifications and driving records. For example if they are hiring for a Driver’s position, drivers’ abstract will be a common ask.

Record checks are based on factors such as 

  • Whether the employee is going to be interacting with customers
  • Will handle money and finances
  • Will have access to money and finances
  • Will have contact with children or elderly

Who does the record check?

Companies involve a third-party organization to conduct the record check. Some also ask their candidates to bring in a Police Information Check or a Driver’s abstract.

When should you conduct the checks?

Background checks cost time and money. We recommend the checks on a candidate you have chosen to hire. It is not a screening process to shortlist your candidates. It is a process to reinforce the hiring decision.

Many organizations also conduct background checks on current employees in certain key positions. Or, companies ask employees to inform immediately if they got convicted. It is better to include this rule for current employees in your background check policy. 

What to do if records are found on the report?

In the case of records found on the report, consider a few factors to make a hiring decision. Look at the relation of the criminal conviction to the position applied for. The other important factor is the time elapsed since the last conviction. And, the number of convictions is also to consider. For example, would you hire a driver with many DUI records?
It is important that candidates disclose the records [if any] on the forms. If a candidate does not disclose the record and gives an incorrect declaration, the company can decide not to hire the candidate.

You may want to consider creating a decision making matrix for different positions. 

If you need help with your Background Check process, please contact us for a free consultation.