Background Checks: A Case Study On Their Significance

The environment is shifting. Borders are extending. International labor forces are moving across borders.

There are fewer obstacles to worldwide competitiveness, and technology has made communication easier and opened up the employment market to almost everyone. In today’s recruiting equation, individuals are the only enduring variable.

Only through a rigorous pre-employment background check process can candidates for a job be thoroughly vetted.

A True Scenario:

I worked as a senior human resources manager for a foreign bank. An employee came to my office and told me that someone had applied for credit cards in his name using stolen information.

I took a report down, but since I was in charge of the payroll and other critical data, I didn’t think much of it.

It wasn’t unusual for staff members to let me know if their banking details had changed or if their bank account had been compromised.

I could then confirm that their deposits were made without any problems. However, a week later, another worker approached me with the same issue, and that’s when my alarm bells went out.

I realized something was going on by the third worker. The fact that three employees experienced identity theft within a three-week period made me understand we had an inside issue.

I tried to figure out what was going on with my employees, but we were having no luck.

The solution

We enlisted the aid of a fraud investigation firm. They came to my office and asked for a list of everyone who had access to our personnel files, and I provided them with a list of 15 to 20 people. 

They also wanted the name, picture, and address of everyone. A week later, they returned with the postmaster general and armed postal police officers. While pointing to a name on the list as they sat down and placed it in front of me.

Oh, he’s a temp in our file room, I said in response. Bring him in, they commanded. In less than five minutes after I took him into my office, the man was handcuffed.

  • To resolve this, it took some of them longer than a year. Because I recruited the temporary worker and what occurred under my supervision, I also felt a little bit responsible.
  • The support I gave was as best as I could make it. In order to assist them in cleaning up their records, our organization felt obligated to do so and paid the associated service fees.
  • I was in such pain. It continued for them for several months. Thankfully, they chose not to sue us or do anything else, but it was a mess.

The lesson

The first thing to learn from this is to recognize when something is outside of your comfort zone and when assistance is needed. Investigation of employee theft was beyond the scope of my staff’s training.

We paid the investigative firm roughly $5,500, but the time that would have been lost was time that was spared. You must be aware of your limitations and when to delegate tasks.

The second thing to remember is to always run background checks on temporary workers (just like you would for a full-time employee), especially if they will be handling confidential data.

Our EmploySmart pre-employment background screening procedure at CRI Group examines a job candidate’s assertions and credentials and probes beneath the surface to ensure that the facts corroborate.

Our specialists carry out thorough investigations into every one of the following aspects of a potential employee:

  • History of Employment References
  • Checks for Credit and Bankruptcies
  • Educational and Professional Background Checks
  • Searches for business successes and failures based on prior employment
  • Regional Supplemental Searches, Compliance Databases, and Regulatory Registers
  • Searches for criminal records and sanctions
  • Validation of Identity and Good 
  • Search Social Networks and Media
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