When and How to Communicate During the Employment Screening Process

Mary Lorenz

By now, you realize the importance of creating a positive candidate experience throughout the recruiting process. What you may not realize, however, is the role employment screening plays in that experience. According to CareerBuilder research, nearly half of candidates (48 percent) say the employment screening process has an impact on how favorably they view a potential employer, and 2 in 5 employers have lost a job candidate due to a poor experience with their background check process.

Transparency and consistent communication have always been key to providing a positive candidate experience. So when it comes to employment screening, the same rules apply. Use these tips to stay transparent and keep candidates informed throughout the employment screening process.

Before the Background Check

Get written consent. If using a third party vendor to conduct a background check, you must adhere to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and notify the candidate in writing. The candidate must also give his or her written consent before you can run a background check.

Explain the process. Don’t assume candidates know how the background check process works. Explain the process, what it will involve, what they will need to do and whom they can contact for questions and further information. Even candidates who don’t have anything to hide may feel anxiety around the background check. Demystifying the process will help alleviate some of this stress.

Give them a reason. Let your candidates know the purpose of the background check. Explain that it is for the protection of employees, customers, company assets and the brand, as well as a way to ensure the best possible hires.

Set their expectations. The background check process can take a few days or longer. Make sure candidates know that they won’t know the results of their background check immediately, and if possible, give them a time estimate of when it will be ready.

Set their minds at ease. Before the employment screening process, clarify with candidates what you will be checking for. Reassure them that all of their information will be kept secure and confidential. Explain that if the background check comes back with potentially disqualifying information, they will get to review the report and dispute and correct the information.

After the Background Check

Thank the candidate. Once candidates have completed the background check on their end, send them an email letting them know the results are being processed and thanking them for cooperating. Remind them that the results will take a few days, and you will contact them once the results are in.

Address any issues ASAP. If you find something on a background check that may affect your decision to hire a candidate, let him or her know immediately. All candidates are entitled to see the full results of their report and explain or dispute any results, as dictated by the FCRA. (This also ensures you don’t lose out on a potentially good hire over what could be a reporting error.)

Using a trusted background check provider will help ensure the most seamless employment screening process and create a positive candidate experience. Find a provider who is not only NAPBS accredited and offers competitive turnaround time, but provides timely communication and support to candidates.

Learn more about how to create a better candidate experience through employment screening.






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