Do Employers Screen You Before Hiring?


Do Employers Screen You Before Hiring?

Photo : Do Employers Screen You Before Hiring?

A large number of employers carry out background checks of job applicants today. They use resources such as Unmask to get information about the type of screenings they require. Often, part or all of these screenings are outsourced to third parties. 

According to a CareerBuilder study, 58% of hiring managers or their employees carry out social screenings to find information in support of an applicant's job qualifications. Less than a quarter check social media with the sole purpose of finding negative information. About half do so to make sure the applicant appears professional online, and just over a third want to see what others' opinions of the applicant are. 

The Purposes of Screening 

Applicants are screened to have their personal information verified. This includes data on application forms and resumes. An employer might also screen to look for criminal history, character flaws, and other negative aspects that could put his company at risk. If an employee is handling confidential data or managing financial resources, they will be screened to determine if they can be entrusted with this or an equally delicate task.   

Types of Screening

The most basic screening is the Social Security number trace. It is employed for criminal and credit history checks and to confirm social security data is valid. Some employers subject candidates for drug screening. It has become a common way to establish trustworthiness, ensure new employees will be productive, and avoid workplace injuries.

Criminal Records

The ways such information can be used to assess applicants can vary from state to state. State Identification agencies and the FBI have services to help companies investigate whether job applicants have criminal histories. 

Most companies are prohibited from using lie detector tests as a pre-employment screening tool under the Employee Polygraph Protection Act. Companies that dispense, distribute, or produce pharmaceuticals and companies that provide security, alarm, or armored vehicle services are exempt from this act. 

Credit Status 

Financial issues can affect the trustworthiness of an employee. Poor financial standing could indicate irresponsible behavior. If a credit history is going to be used to screen someone, the employer must obtain their consent.

Worker's Compensation 

Your compensation claims history might be investigated for the purposes of employment. Publicly accessible appeals that provide proof an applicant's injury will prevent him from carrying out his duties can be used in this process.

Sex Offender Registry 

Recruiters may search state and federal sex offender databases to avoid hiring someone who could damage the company's reputation or put staff or customers at risk. 

Personality Tests or Skill Assessments

To determine if a candidate has the right personality or skills for a specific job, an employer will run this type of test or assessment. It may include an evaluation of technical skills such as programming, word processing, writing, or editing. The applicant might be asked to take a multiple-choice test. 

Driving Record Check

If the candidate will be driving for the job, the employer will definitely check their driving record. Jobs in trucking, delivery, and sales mandate this type of screening. 

Employment and Education 

Your prospective employer might do employment verification to confirm details such as past job positions and employment dates. All employees in the US have to prove eligibility to work and confirm their identity by completing an I-9 form. In addition, an employer might want to verify a candidate's major, degree, and academic performance before making a hiring decision. 


Employers often interview references or ask for written recommendations to evaluate a candidate's readiness to work. Part of this process involves asking the candidate for permission to interview previous managers or supervisors. 

On a final and perhaps surprising note, many job seekers have found searches of their social network profiles beneficial. The CareerBuilder study showed 34% of hiring managers thought the applicant was very creative based on a social media screening. A third reported being impressed with the applicant's professional image. 37% reported having found information in support of professional qualifications.

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