How To Choose A Background Check Service

Accuracy is a paramount concern when choosing a background check service.  Companies with reputations for accurate reports can be found through referral, or through a pre-screened service that works with employment screening companies and other business service providers.  Chances are, speed is also a factor- a good employment screening company should be able to turn around accurate information within a week or less, though you can allow more time for in-depth searches that also check references and professional qualifications.  In addition to accuracy and speed, here are a few other factors to consider when choosing a background check service:

Services Offered: Employment screening firms vary in the types of background checks they offer.  Comprehensive services can provide a personal and criminal background check, verify professional and educational qualifications, and check employee references.  If you’re looking for specific information (for example, driving records) you probably won’t need such an inclusive search.  Choose a company that offers the specific services you need. 

Location and Service Area: Some services only offer state or local background checks, so consider the type of information you need.  If you need nationwide or international information, make sure to consult a company that offers these services.

User Interface:  How do you send and receive information?  Can you receive reports online?  Is it easy to choose the report you need, if you’re purchasing different reporting features for different employees?  Ask the vendor rep about the procedure for using the service.

Report Format: Will you be performing an employment background check on several potential employees at once?  If so, you’ll probably receive data in a report format.  Make sure that the report is easy to understand- you can ask the vendor rep how reports are traditionally formatted and even ask to see a sample. 

Customer Service/Support:  Will you be assigned a dedicated representative, or will you need to call a helpdesk for support?  Is online support available?  Make sure you know where to turn if you need help interpreting information or have questions about the information you are given in reports. 


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