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8 Background Checks for New Hires

There is no denying the fact that the most important resource for an organization is its employees. Good and loyal employees can transform a good company into a great one. You can always review the performance of your employees using performance management and review processes to track how employees are doing and help them improve. But will it not be better to skip hiring for employees who may not be a good fit for your organization?

The employee background check has become a vital part of the recruitment process for employers around the world. However, the process is not a piece of cake and throws up numerous challenges for HRs who are unsure about how to stay compliant.

What is an employee background check?

A background check is a legal investigation to verify the identity, credentials, employment history and criminal record of an individual. Companies and employers conduct employee background checks for vetting and screening candidates and new hires. It is a vital part of the recruitment process as it helps a company to confirm the authenticity of the person they are hiring and trust him with the duties of a position.

To verify the status of individual applicants, Human Resources must conduct a series of database and reference checks. Some checks are recommended, while others are required by law. In order to ensure compliance with data protection legislation, such tests can require applicants’ prior consent. The HR manager has to remain up to date with local standards and processes.

Employee background checks

Several background checks are conducted for different situations, let’s take a look at some of the common ones used for employees.

Identity verification check

Verify the applicant has provided an accurate name, contact number, social security verification number, motor vehicle reports and passport.

Criminal record check

Check if an individual has been convicted of a crime, is on probation, has outstanding warrants, or is on a sex offender registry or government watchlist.

Employment history check

Check to see what firms the candidate worked for and for how long to ensure they had an accurate job history.

Education and credential check

Verify the accuracy of the university degrees, technical training, and other education and credentials on the candidate’s resume.

Reference checks

References from previous employers are checked to ensure that the candidate is a good fit for the job. This can be done via phone, letter, or email.

Right to work checks

For individuals applying to work in the UK have to undergo this check. These ensure that an applicant is legally eligible to work in the UK. All applicants regardless of race, nationality, creed, origin have to go under this check to avoid any discrimination.

Motor vehicle records

This check is conducted for an applicant whose being hired to drive on company time. Find out if he’s been involved in a road accident or received any citations.

Credit check

Usually reserved for applicants working in the financial field. Determine whether the applicant is financially responsible. This is particularly critical if they would oversee a budget or have access to company funds.

Why Employee Background Check is Important?

Making an informed decision based on a thorough employment screening process can have significant impacts on any business. Background checks have become an integral part of the overall employee recruitment process. Employers have the right to know and verify the background information of an applicant they are about to commit to a legal relationship with. They also have the right to ensure that a prospective recruit has nothing on their record that might endanger the company’s operations or pose a safety risk to clients and other employees. So, if you want to ensure hiring for trustworthy applicants with a clean background it is best to run a comprehensive background check on each applicant and avoid possible troubles.


Look nowhere and reach out to Shergroup today! Use our service to screen the information presented by the candidate for their residential address and their current employment details along with the credentials submitted. For UK based employers, it’s important to check for the employee’s right to work in the UK before signing an agreement.

We make sure we cover that and everything around it for you. Additional employment searches including DBS searches can be made – ask our friendly Business Solutions Advisors for a specific type of search. Lastly, conducting these checks cannot be used to denigrate or discriminate against candidates on any grounds, and we, the Shergroupies, strictly observe this rule. Call us on 0845 890 9200 to discuss your requirements.

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Last updated | 19 July 2023

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