What to Expect from your First Pre-Employment Background Screening

Much of the hiring process goes on behind the scenes. As a candidate, you don’t participate as companies gather information or hold debates about your merits. For the most part, you can’t do much to influence these aspects of the procedure. However, you should understand as much as possible and do what you can to achieve a positive outcome.

A crucial example of this dynamic comes from pre-employment background screening. One survey showed that 92% of hiring managers used some form of background checks during the hiring process. As such, you should expect each potential employer to take this step, to some extent or another.

Matching with the right employer will minimize the potential danger posed by a background screening. A top recruiter, like SmartTalent, will steer you towards companies well-suited for your skills and work history. You’ll have the direction you need to make the best of each stage of your job search.

Beyond finding the right employers, it’s important to understand the basic process involved in a pre-employment screening. From there, you can take further steps to be prepared.

What to Expect from Pre-Employment Screening

Each employer will have a different mix of information that they will want to gather during pre-employment screening. Here are some of the steps that could come up:

  • ID Verification
  • Work History and Education Verification
  • Credit Checks
  • Criminal History
  • Drug Tests
  • Skill Tests

Along with having varied models for screenings, employers also have different standards for using the information gathered. For example, one survey discovered that most companies (59%) disqualify less than 5% of their applicants based on criminal records.

So don’t get discouraged when you face a potential screening. Rarely does any single data point completely eliminate you from competition for the job. (Unless the employer discovers you had lied to them during the recruitment process — that often becomes a deal-breaker.)

Rather, consider the screening as just another way that the employer gathers information about you. Look at it as an add-on to your resume, cover letter, and interview.

SmartTalent can help you prepare for each step in the job-search process. You’ll get the advice you need to ace a pre-employment screening, as well as guidance in every other aspect of the process. Reach out to SmartTalent to upgrade your chances of finding the ideal job for you.

How to Prepare for Screening

Now that you know the basics of a background screening, it’s time to consider steps you can take to boost your odds of getting hired. Here are some tips that will let you get the most out of the screening process:

Understand Each Prospective Employer’s Screening Plan

As we’ve noted, each employer has a different screening policy. Know what to expect when you enter a recruiting process. This will help you better prepare, letting you provide the information necessary to land the job.

Be Honest During the Recruitment Process

You might have embarrassing details in your past. When you face a background check, don’t try to cover these up. If something will appear during the screening process, it’s better to be upfront about it.

Having red flags appear during a screening might not kill your candidacy for the job. However, getting caught in a lie certainly will. As such, stay honest and be prepared to explain any issues that come up.

Know What a Screen Will Turn Up

Self-reflection will help you avoid any uncomfortable screening situations. Once you know what your potential employer plans to do as part of its background check, you should have a good idea of what they’ll discover. Knowing this information will help you develop a response strategy.

Prepare Your References

A background screening doesn’t just impact you. Often, companies will reach out to your references as part of this process. If so, warn your contacts that they might hear from a prospective employer. This will minimize the impact of surprise and lead to a better result.

Expert guidance will help you optimize your job search. SmartTalent will give you the support and advice you need to find your dream job.

Contact SmartTalent today to get started.

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