News & Resources

Businesses are failing to ask appropriate questions in online background checks

Sep 03, 2012 Quinn Thomas

Performing a background check on applicants is believed to be a necessary part of the hiring process. However, a recent report suggests many companies are failing to perform their due diligence. The research performed by CareerXRoads found that companies' online application services in particular are failing them, leaving both employers and applicants in the metaphorical dark. The bulk of this problem is attributed to a lack of built-in screening questions. For example, nearly 25 percent of employers asked applicants no screening questions during the online process. Furthermore, of the two-thirds who did ask questions, they were primarily generic. Many of the questions were also relatively irrelevant to the position being advertised or sought. The survey reported that fewer than 30 percent of employers asked applicants questions pertaining to the job, while 6 percent unnecessarily asked for applicants' Social Security numbers. Instead of using online applications, many small businesses are using background check companies to investigate consumer credit data and criminal histories.