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For the most part, pre-employment background checks have a
criminal search component.  Almost every
employer is interested in seeing whether an applicant has a criminal history
they should be aware of.  Depending on
the state, we can either conduct a statewide criminal search or a county
criminal records search. For the purpose of this topic, we will be discussing
the incomplete data that comes with conducting the statewide criminal records
search.

For instance, in Michigan we can conduct the ICHAT which is
a name-based Michigan criminal history check. This search returns any arrest records
the individual may have. However, when running this search we have noticed that
sometimes it returns an arrest segment but it won’t provide us with the
disposition of said arrest. In this case, we then make contact with the
applicable courts to determine what the outcome was.  It’s important to understand that the circuit
or district courts don’t always report their dispositions to the state police
therefore this information is lacking when conducting the statewide criminal
search.

When Statewide Criminal Searches Come With Incomplete Data

Tennessee is another state which does not report the
dispositions on their statewide criminal search known as the ‘Tennessee Bureau
of Investigation’. The same rules as above apply when we get arrest results in
Tennessee. It’s very important to have investigators conduct your background
checks, especially when it pertains to an individuals’ criminal history. It’s
imperative for us to determine the dispositions for the incomplete criminal
data otherwise we would be providing our clients incomplete background checks.

We recommend to not only conduct a
statewide criminal search but also run a county criminal record search. As
previously stated, information isn’t always communicated throughout the
different agencies and you do not want to miss out on pertinent material because
of this. Plus, additional criminal records may be available with the county
court that you would be interested in knowing about. 

As you can see, we may be faced with obstacles
when conducting criminal records search. 
But none of which hinder us from obtaining the information we need. It’s
simply doing a little bit more work so that we can provide you with accurate
information.  We understand the
importance of hiring qualified candidates and that’s why we do not leave any
stones unturned.  This is what
differentiates us from any other background check company. 

2 weeks

Background checks for staffing agencies are an important aspect of the workforce. In cities like Detroit, many companies rely on staffing agencies to fill temporary, long term, and contract positions. While some may see these positions as being not important to screen candidates for, the truth is quite the opposite. In any employment situation, hiring an employee with nefarious motivations, a violent criminal background, or even something like careless driving charges can become a liability companies simply aren’t willing to deal with. With the number of staffing agencies out there, a company can switch from one to another in a heartbeat—this makes the quality of the candidates put forward to companies even more imperative.

For these reasons, background
checks for staffing agencies should be seen as something that are a necessity.
As with any company looking to hire an employee, it would be considered
ridiculous to not put them through some sort of background check before
extending a final job offer. Often times, staffing agencies can be considered
“on the hook” for the employees they staff into a company and of course, no one
want to deal with the complications of a hire that didn’t work out or became a
liability.

How do I know
what background check company to choose?

We know what you’re thinking.
It’s just another sales-centered blog post where the writer begs and pleads for
you to hire the company they represent. Here at BCGG, we take pride in the work
we do for our customers and appreciate word of mouth referrals—this post is
simply meant to caution readers, particularly those representing staffing
agencies, about the dangers of those “$19.99 Background Check Special”
websites.

We’ve all found them on the
internet when looking up someone we are curious about. Whether it’s a prospective
romantic partner, a questionable neighbor, or even a friend of a friend that
simply gives you a bad feeling, these websites can compile data about someone
that just barely scrapes the surface of what’s actually out there. We get
it—it’s all about ease of access, convenience, and simplicity behind the
platform. It’s always important to remember that the shortest path to your goal
is not always the best; cutting corners can come back to bite you in the end.

What’s the
difference between a company like BGCC and those other sites?

We like to think of it this way; would you rather have an automatic report created with the bare-minimum, or something more like an actual investigation? Some may not know the difference, but we take pride here in our staff of trained and experienced investigators who search tirelessly for that one missing piece. For instance, if a staffing agency is looking to hire someone in Georgia based off the fact that the job is in the Atlanta area, these online searches will complete searches in Georgia based off of the fact that the position will be held there. Little does this site know that this individual also lived in Tennessee, South Carolina, Florida, and Mississippi. A simple, automatically generated report may not catch criminal records in these other states—making your staffing agency background check not fully comprehensive.

Experience is what drives us to
ask the question “why” in all investigations. If we see something that doesn’t
quite make sense, we believe there is always an answer. It may seem second
nature to search in all areas that a person has lived in the past, but for
many, the cheapest and easiest way to cover your bases in any hiring situation
is the main goal. Due diligence is a step we take in all investigations, so
make sure there is always a “personal” or human-centered aspect to your
staffing agency background check over an automated search.

What else
should be included in these comprehensive background checks for staffing
agencies?

A full-service investigation firm should be able to cover all your bases when it comes to crafting the perfect background check for your staffing agency. At BGCC, we don’t just offer one package at a discounted price for all—you can actually choose what options you think are necessary when it comes to your background check. In addition, we offer services like drug testing for applicants that would not be an option with an animated background screening.

Keep in mind that an extensive
background check is not always something that is totally necessary for a
staffing agency background check. If a company requires a background screening
periodically or is only interested in seeing if anything “new” has occurred
since the last background check, we can customize this for you as well. Those
automated services only offer one type of report for a flat fee, marked up 100%
for the most of the company’s profits.

At the end of the day, don’t be afraid to contact a professional investigator or a company that’s not part of a major service for your staffing agency's background checks. It’s always important to explore all options when it comes to cost and ease of use/access, so it shouldn’t be considered a “bad” thing.

1 month

The obvious answer to the question can small businesses run background checks on applicants is yes. Not only can they, they should. Every time they look to hire someone. If you run a background check on applicants, you can learn much more about the appropriateness of hiring this person than to simply determine if they were recently convicted of a felony. Truth be told, very few applicants will be recent felons, so despite being an important part of the background check, it is just a small portion of the information that you should be receiving and considering.

small businesses run background checksBecause small businesses usually lack a sophisticated HR department doesn’t mean that the running a background check on applicants needs to be a hassle, time waster or run-away expense. It can not only be easy and affordable; it can also be exceptionally helpful in weeding out unqualified and risky applicants. Some of the key things to consider before you begin to run background checks on applicants are as follows:

Can an employer run background checks on applicants using a free or instant background check like you see on TV or find on Google?

The true answer is maybe, but that maybe comes with great risk. We all understand that as a small business owner and entrepreneur, you take charge and get things done. You have that application or resume in your hands and you can quickly jump on the web, get out your credit card and get it done before the applicant has had a chance to drive home from the interview. There are two big reasons to not do that.

The first reason not to use the el-cheapo internet site to conduct a background check is because many of those sites operate outside of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) which is the law the pertains to using background checks on applicants and employees. Many of these sites are nothing more that bots that scrape the internet for possible information that matches, in some way, the name you put in them. They don’t find actual records very often, they are full or unrelated and erroneous information and somewhere in the tiny print of their disclaimer, it says that you can’t use the report for hiring purposes anyway. Violating the FRCA, if you simply failed to understand what you were buying is a big, expensive problem. The EEOC and plaintiff lawyers are happy to come calling when you use the wrong data. Buyer beware!

The second reason not to jump in and run a quick background check on applicants is that you need the applicant’s/employee’s permission. The FCRA was designed to give protections to applicants and employees to keep inaccurate information out of their consumer reports. The FCRA also regulates who can provide consumer report information, what reasons someone can obtain that information and who can obtain that information. It also mandates that “consumers” (your applicant or employee) can see and dispute the information that is found in those reports. These are some really good laws for everyone, and you want to make sure to get formal, written permission, also called consent, to run a background check the correct way.

Will hiring a professional background screening provider to run background checks on applicants take a lot of time and money?

No. Today much of the “hassle” factor and busy work has been eliminated from the employee background screening process. You can easily get affordable access to a provider who can set you up with an account in minutes and provide you with the tools to automate much of the process and focus on running your business. These quality providers (if you need help finding the right employee background check provider, click here!) do cost more than the $19.95 junk background check sites you see advertising on late night TV, but the cost, both in dollars and time, is very small in comparison to hiring the wrong applicant. These firms, like Background Check Central, handle nearly all of the administrative, regulatory and processing busy work involved when you run a background check on applicants.

Why I do I want more information than a criminal record check when I run a background check on an applicant I’m looking to hire?

There are many types of records that one can consider when hiring a new employee. Many applicants come to you claiming to have made certain accomplishments in their prior employment, to have obtained a specific education or certification, to offer you real, unbiased references, to be financially stable and the list goes on and on. Unless your position doesn’t require any qualifications at all, you would likely want to know if an applicant was truthful with you and is actually the person their resume makes them out to be. Further, many types of records have potential predictive value for you to consider.

Applicant and employee background checks don’t have to break the bank, slow you down or create a bunch of busywork. You can easily obtain a turn-key applicant background checking service from a qualified consumer reporting agency that specializes in assisting small businesses.

3 months

Cheap Online Background Checks are NEVER a substitute for REAL, PROFESSIONAL GRADE Background Checks done by licensed professionals.

Background Check FAQWe have probably hammered this scenario to death when we talk about the differences between real background checks and the kind you can get online instantly for a few bucks.

This question was posed by a potential client earlier this week, and it is one we get often.  Below is that question and our response.

Employer Shopping for Employee Background Checks:

We are really trying to watch our budget on these background checks and have found a number of places online that we can screen our applicants for under $30.00 each.  Can you match those kinds of prices?

Our Response:

Thank you for reaching back out to us regarding the comparison rates you have found, we encourage anyone looking for background checks to shop around and we hope you can appreciate what we have to offer and look forward to the opportunity to work with you.  This is a concern we get from time to time given the unregulated landscape of the background check industry, which makes it hard to make an “apples to apples” comparison between companies with different offerings.

By contrast, the companies you are seeing advertise those types of low rates online are most frequently internet based software companies who have created background check platforms, which primarily utilize third-party data brokers and repositories of free public information, which often produce incomplete results and may include “possible hits” when an applicant has a common name.  Something we have always ensured is our compliance with the best practices in applicant screening, which includes obtaining our records directly from the state, local and federal agencies which maintain them.  The data costs we pay to operate in this fashion are often in themselves higher than what some of the online brokers charge.  These are the same data costs that would apply to any company working directly with the data at its source.  We also ensure compliance with all applicable HR and employee screening laws to help mitigate issues that can arise throughout the process.  Best of all, if you have questions or need something done differently or more quickly, we are real people you can call or email anytime!

What we can do to help you keep costs down, is come up with some additional customized packages that may still fit what you find important know about your applicants.  We will likely be able to find a good middle ground on packages that both ensure the best coverage and rate level for you.

6 months

Staffing is highly competitive, and the best firms are seeking any competitive edge they can get.  Background Check Central can turn your staffing employee screening costs into a competitive edge in the market, without spending extra time, effort or money.

Some of the secrets to how we help the best staffing agencies to get a competitive edge include:

  • Reducing turn around time of your staffing employee screening, allowing you to place people faster and beat Staffing Employee Screeningthe competition to the punch.
  • Searching the right data and verifying the results rather than just searching the free online records that can burn your clients and cost you the account.
  • These free searches don’t actually qualify as real staffing employee screening.
  • Freeing up your time so your team can make you more money. Our services leverage technology and automation that eliminates time-wasting clerical tasks and keep your operations lean and working on things other than staffing employee screening.
  • Our platform integrates with hundreds of the top applicant tracking systems.
  • Every background check is reviewed by a real investigator, not a piece of software, or an administrative assistant, giving you a local professional to speak with should you ever need support or clarification.
  • Specially designed staffing employee screening background checks, not pre-formed packages that don’t add value.

Don’t spend your money on deficient staffing employee screening! Use that money to give you an edge and keep your clients happy and avoid losing business unnecessarily. Call us today!

855-678-8282

 

8 months

Employee Background Checks Are Not A One-N-Done. Annual Background Checks Are A Must!

Annual Background ChecksAs employee background checks continue to evolve and become more useful, many employers remain stuck using the old narrative that, if the original employee background check that is conducted at the time of hire is good, the employee is approved forever. But what happens if something happens while they are your employee? Let's assume that whatever happens is bad enough that you would not hire someone for that job today if they have that in their background?

This prompts smart employers to do less extensive, but badly needed annual background checks on current employees. These are particularly important to do if you hire workers who deal with the public, with finances, who visit client locations or homes, who drive as part of their work, or any who work with vulnerable individuals like the elderly, children or impaired people. A great way to implement annual background checks is to set them up to occur just before annual employee reviews or at year end. Both approaches are easy to explain to employees and to track. As always, it is important to perform the same type of employee background checks on every employee with the same job. Employers can change the elements of those checks from one type of employee to another, however, they should treat everyone performing the same job the same way. Keep in mind that annual background checks are usually less expensive than the employee background checks conducted at the time of hire, because searches like education verification, employment history verification and confirming identity of the applicant should not normally have to be repeated.

Often times, employers will include annual drug screening with the annual background checks which can be helpful, but if the schedule for these tests is known, may allow a bad apple employee to engage in prohibited drug use during the year, but abstain just prior to the test to circumvent discovery.

As we move forward, the next innovation is to continuously monitor employee backgrounds and report activity as soon as it registers with courts, credit bureaus, etc. This is a great option, but it involves and greater cost for the employer and may be overkill for many positions or companies.

10 months

Understanding the legality of pre-employment background checks is not something every Human Resources Manager or company owner knows about.  That is why it is imperative that you employ a background screening company that knows the ins and outs of how to effectively protect you from bad hires.  Understanding what information you will receive, and what it actually means is why choosing a reputable screening company is so important.  If you choose a “$19.99 Background” online, you have no idea where the information comes from and there is no human to speak with who can explain it to you.

If you think you are covered, but you are not, it often takes time before your shortcomings will come to light Gaps to Look for in Pre-Employment Background Checksand this often leads employers to have a false sense of security.  Chicago Public Schools is coming under fire for their background screening policies of teachers and support staff including custodians, bus drivers, engineers and volunteers.  After a report came out last year showing that employees who abused students had criminal histories that should have disqualified them from working with kids, the district spent $3 million to redo their background checks.  Since this process began, they have barred more than 250 employees from returning to work this school year.

Schools, like many other employers, would prefer to avoid the disclosure that they hired an individual who went on to commit a crime and this leads us to the #1 issue facing pre-employment background checks, transparency.  All too often there is not enough evidence to formally charge these individuals and they are disciplined and given the option of resigning or being fired; most choose to resign.  When this individual then applies for a job in a different district, a call is made to confirm their employment records, and nothing can be said about their reason for leaving their position and you would find no warning signs of their behavior.  The Human Resources department is well versed in the liability they face should they release any information that is outside of verifying details of employment.

Knowing that missing information, or misleading information can occur in a background check is the first step in preparing your company to handle any situation that may arise.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-met-chicago-schools-background-checks-20180902-story.html#

1 year

Murderer Given New Roof by Local Charity

https://www.thetimesherald.com/story/news/local/port-huron/2018/06/25/vet-who-got-new-roof-has-sordid-past/724848002/

When a headline reads something like “Convicted Murderer Given Free Roof” or a feel-good charity story turns ugly because of the recipient’s past; the intention of doing a good thing for someone deserving is lost, and the charity is often made to look bad as a result. That’s where a real Michigan background check comes it.

In the charity world, giveaways are usually a great way to develop positive media stories about your organization, but they can also turn sour if the organization does not do their due diligence ahead of time, including conducting a background check.  This story can be used as a cautionary tale for any organization that is looking to do a good deed, even though they thought they were doing the necessary screening.  This organization implemented a screening process for those who applied for assistance, but it was not a real Michigan background check. Instead they only checked to see if the individuals were actively in the Michigan Department of Corrections.

In this story, the man who was awarded a new roof, in Port Huron, was convicted of second-degree murder and assault with intent to murder in 1976 and aggravated stalking in 2003.  Because it has been longer than three years since his discharge date, this individual no longer appears on the Michigan Department of Corrections website (a free search).  Many organizations look for the least expensive way to do a Michigan background check for their giveaway applicants, but they often find that the small fee they would have paid to have the applicants properly screened would have saved them from bad press.  In this case, a more thorough background check should have included a state criminal history search, with no limitations on the number of years back the data can go.  Having conducted this level of background check, something we would consider a basic Michigan Background Check, would have cost as little as $30 and could have saved this charity a lot of bad press both locally in Port Huron.

For more information about a real Michigan background check for charity recipients, employee background checks or background checks for caregivers, please check out our website at www.backgroundcheckcentral.com

Contributed by Adam Groth

1 year

Source: http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2017-2018/billintroduced/House/pdf/2018-HIB-6126.pdf

June 7, 2018, Michigan Representative Peter Lucido of Shelby Township introduced House Bill 6126, which expands the total dollar figure landlords can collect as a security deposit from 1.5 months rent to 2 months rent plus $100.00.  Given that the average tenant background check costs around $85.00, this addition should adequately Michigan Landlords to Collect More Cashcover the up-front expense most landlords would incur by conducted such background checks.  The question on this bill is if the “plus $100” is considered part of the security deposit, which by law is to be returned upon the completion of the rental agreement, minus damages; or is this added figure is to cover upfront expenses incurred by the landlord?  As WZZM13 of Grand Rapids pointed out in their coverage (https://www.wzzm13.com/article/news/local/michigan/heres-why-renting-a-place-to-live-could-get-more-expensive-in-michigan/69-563017533), renting in Michigan could get slightly more expensive.  By landlords conducting background investigations on their tenants, they are further protecting themselves against bad renters who might otherwise damage their property or fail to make payments.  Too often we speak with landlords in need of our locate and asset investigation services to help track down and collect from former tenants who failed to make payments or destroyed their rental properties.  We ask these folks if they considered conducting background checks before signing the final paperwork; with most saying they hadn’t considered them before the issues they had, but will do so in the future.

Pricing on tenant background checks is really straightforward and a reputable company should only charge a landlord for the information they actually want (not an entire pre-made package).  Most searches include criminal history and credit history, but civil litigation and prior landlord/tenant cases are also applicable; with even the more comprehensive background investigations coming in at under $150.00.

1 year

 

When the Lion’s team President, Rod Wood, was contacted by the Detroit News to provide comment about coach Matt Patricia’s background, this should not have been how he learned of Patricia’s arrest for aggravated assault in 1996.

When the Detroit News broke the story on Wednesday, it opened up a firestorm of controversy and concern. With the country focused on trying to eliminate domestic violence, sexual harassment and gender discrimination, the Lion’s, known widely to be an ethical, conscientious and forthright organization, are now a lightning rod for criticism.

Let’s assume that Coach Patricia’s rendition is accurate and that the complainant withdrew her accusation because he was innocent and it was the right thing to do. The fact that the Lions were hiring a high-profile person for a very, very public job mandates that their background check and hiring processes catch something so easily detectable by anyone with an internet connection.

Detroit Lions Coach, Matt Patricia's Background Check Blunder Highlights the Reality That Too Many Businesses Use the Wrong Background Screening VendorIf the Lions elected to believe Patricia, and it is important to remember that he was never convicted of any wrong doing, and to move forward with the hiring decision, that seems like a reasonable decision. Clearly they followed the letter of the law and confined their decision to Michigan labor and employment law by only using convictions in their process. They even came out later and said that this report did not change their opinion or their hiring decision in any way. The problem for us, as professional background check providers, is that the arrest was not known to them until the Detroit News called. It is sitting in an easily accessible public record that we, and apparently the Detroit News, found in seconds. There was even a newspaper report of the incident available too.

 

Executive level hiring decisions should include questions to the applicant like: Have you ever been arrested for a felony? Have you ever been charged with a felony?

It is disconcerting to think that the Lions relied on people to conduct this background check, who so obviously failed to find what was so easy for the rest of the world to find and so important for them to know. They should have been made aware of this incident, regardless if it was over 20 years ago.

One can blame the Lion’s, but only to a degree. They, like many other companies in Detroit and across the country, fall victim to the tricks of the background screening industry. This industry works very hard to keep what they actually do hidden and to rely upon legal disclaimers to exonerate them if something like this comes to light. Instead the industry relies on technology gimmicks and misleading named search bundles that end up leaving too many clients feeling a false sense of security, while maintaining a great deal of risk that could otherwise be mitigated.

Far too often, companies and organizations select their employment screening / employment background check provider based upon price, speed (which usually means cutting corners and limiting the sources searched, and of course more legal ** disclaimers!) or because a slick sales person sold them on the latest version of a “super instant background check” technology. Big employee background check firms spend massive amounts of money on sales and entertainment to lock in the work of large employers like the Lions.

The reality is that there is no way to do an instant nationwide background check. Period. Nearly countless records are not searchable from the web, nor are they stored in some private database. Were just not there. In fact, we’re not even close.

This situation should serve as a warning to all employers and business owners to better understand what their background check provider does and does not do for them. Cheap and fast mean what they have always meant, low quality and unreliable. Following the law does not require that you be left in the dark and, like the Lions, every caring, ethical employer should be aware of what the agents working on their behalf are really doing as part of their background check.

 

2 years

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