Background checks are now essential to the HR process because your company may employ various employees, including full-time employees, remote workers, and freelancers. However, you cannot genuinely claim to know them. Aside from that, you don’t get to meet some employees in person at the office, making it difficult to keep track of them. In all cases, background screening is the only option.
The process is critical for better understanding your employees, identifying red flags, identifying strengths, and fostering trust between the organization and its employees.
What is a background check?
This is a process that a person or company uses to confirm the validity of a person’s criminal record, education, employment history, and other past activities to make informed decisions. A background check may be required if you are applying for a job, looking for a new apartment, or purchasing a firearm.
How do background checks work?
Background checks begin with confirming an individual’s identity using the information provided, such as their date of birth and Social Security number. Then, depending on the type of information sought, searches are conducted using a variety of public databases and court records.
However, some searches will necessitate specialists manually contacting employers and other organizations, such as educational institutions, in addition to database checks.
What is an API for background checks?
An API for background checks refers to a software system or program that connects existing systems to the background screening gamut.
Significantly, verification of candidate credentials becomes an integrated part of the HR system with the help of background checks API, removing all gaps and doubts. Finally, it improves the user experience and promotes productivity by selecting a skilled and efficient workforce.
How does a background check API work?
A background check integration API does not necessitate extensive engineering knowledge. The dashboard provides a comprehensive view of the verification process and immediately assists in getting it started.
A link can be shared with the candidates to invite them to begin filling out forms and providing necessary approvals while HR receives real-time updates.
Significantly, the API does not necessitate any prior coding or engineering experience on the end-user part. The screening process is automated, seamless, and customizable thanks to backend integration.
Notably, for the process to work, it involves one-time programming by the API developer.
What can be disclosed in a background check?
A background check service can reveal a wealth of information about an employee’s past, including employment history, education, criminal history, and much more. Because numerous checks are available, employers will select which checks to run based on the positions they’re hiring for and the type of information required to make an informed decision.
- Criminal history background checks determine whether the applicant’s history indicates a risk to the employer, other employees, or customers.
- Verification of education to ensure the employee has a degree or credentials relevant to the job they applied for.
- Employment verification determines whether the employee worked at the jobs they claimed.
You can also use background checks to check an applicant’s credit history, determine whether they have the necessary professional licenses, test for illicit drug use, and so on.
When should an API for integrated background checks be used?
Identifying the precise integration points to weave into the background check API is critical. Some examples are:
- When various departments need to access data related to background checks, going in for an API is the ideal solution:
A dashboard can assist internal stakeholders in checking and verifying critical data. However, logging into the dashboard is sometimes the best or fastest option. A background check API can keep all teams up to speed and simplify escalation to the appropriate team.
Manual processes and dashboards can take too much time and depend on internal users’ availability, mood, etc. That is different when the backend process is automated, and a simple layout allows all relevant users access.
- Integrate the background check API in the sign-up process:
Background check API integration makes perfect sense during the onboarding or user sign-up phase if your company works with two-sided marketplaces and an on-demand workforce.
It is critical to collect information about the user for background checks. The process is simplified as a direct link to request a background screening is sent to the users.
- Incorporate the API at the point of product delivery to the end user:
In the childcare industry, for example, the end-user or parents frequently want to know whether or not the childcare personnel’s background check has been completed.
A badge or other indicators confirm that you completed the check-in in such cases. These indicators can also indicate the types and levels of background checks performed, providing parents with peace of mind.
At what point should you integrate the employment background check API into your platform?
Let’s look at how we can incorporate background check API into an organizational system.
- The start-up phase is the best time to implement the automated process rather than deciding on SOPs for a manually-driven process.
- When selecting an HR system, choose an API to make the entire process smooth and refined.
- You can also do the API integration during the company’s growth phase. When the organization expands, it is time to automate manual processes. A time-consuming and inefficient background screening process can be a significant demotivator.
- Another time you should consider API integration is when you want to delight your customers and provide high customer engagement.
Which compliance laws should I know about?
All employers conducting background checks must follow the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) guidance, and, where applicable, state and local ban-the-box laws.
The FCRA requires employers to obtain written permission from candidates before conducting a background check. The FCRA also includes action rules for employers to follow if the report reveals information that may harm the hiring decision.
The EEOC guidance aims to keep employers from conducting background checks to deprive job applicants of equal opportunity under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act based on protected categories such as age, race, color, national origin, sex, religion, and disability.
Significantly, compliance laws differ by state; it is critical to know the laws that affect your company based on its location and where its employees live.
Every organization has reasons for integrating the API for background checks into the current system. Background checks API can also be integrated at any stage of the organization’s evolution. Significantly, HR and the relevant departments must collaborate to identify such points to automate the process and ensure smooth operation.