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Background Screening Trends; an Annual Survey

When it comes to hiring the ideal employees for your company, going beyond the surface level should be standard procedure. By verifying its employees’ background, an organization’ assets, image, identity and most importantly, its employees are safeguarded.

Conducting professional background screening is becoming very vital specially because of the increasing globalized workforce as the number of people working remotely is increasing day by day. The Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA), a non-profit trade group that represents background screening firms around the world, has published their 5th annual survey titled ‘Background Screening: Trends in the United States and Abroad’ with purpose to identify and evaluate practices that are trending background screening industry.

The analysis delves in global background screening patterns and evaluates the disparities between companies that have offices in the United States and those that don't.

1. Background screening is popular among employers with offices in the United States

Speaking of popularity, 93% of all the businesses claimed to do some form of background check. As per the survey, it was found that although background screening is almost universal among 95% of the companies with at least one U.S. presence, it is slightly less common among companies with no U.S. locations that makes 79% of them. Furthermore, 76% of the companies from all around the world have a defined screening policy in place.

2. Increasing Hiring Quality and Maintaining Company’s Reputation is Important than ever

In the five-year history of this survey, maintaining business image surpassed compliance obligations as top reason of why companies do employee screening.

According to 51% of the companies with U.S. operations, improving the quality is one of the top three motivations for background screening while 61% of the companies that do not have a presence in the United States conduct background screening primarily for quality enhancement.

    The top three reasons for doing background checks in 2021 are:
  1. Safeguard employees and customers (76%)
  2. Enhance hiring quality (52%)
  3. Maintain company’s image (41%)

3. Companies with U.S. presence are more likely to screen in most workforce categories

According to the survey, 73% of the companies with presence in United States wait until a written offer is signed to perform background checks while for 42% of the companies with no U.S. location, conducting a background check after a job interview but before a job offer was found more prevalent.

4. Backgrounds Checks based on finger print are not the benchmark

In the United States, fingerprint-based background checks are often misbelieved as the benchmark. However, this mode of verification has severe limitations and should not be used as a particular resource for background checks for employment, volunteer work, or tenant screening. According to PBSA poll, criminal background checks are the most common method of background screening and employers rely on national criminal databases as well as statewide, county, regional and local sources considerably as compared to fingerprint-based verification.

5. Criminal Background Verification are more common in the U.S.

A large number of companies undertake both criminal and noncriminal background checks around the world. Criminal background checks, on the other hand, are more prevalent among businesses with U.S. locations, while noncriminal background checks are marginally more popular among organizations without U.S. locations.

While assessing what factors are included in a background check, the survey found that businesses that have no presence in U.S. are more likely to initiate education verification, employment verifications, social media, and credit/financial background than businesses with presence in U.S. locations. Driving records, drug and alcohol tests, and sex offender registry searches are more typical for companies with U.S. presence.

6. Background Screening Reach is expected to Expand outside of the U.S.

The survey, while analyzing the expansion of background screening areas, found that firms around the world are significantly considering Social Media Screening. Moreover, organizations without any U.S. presence had much greater numbers overall than those having U.S. presence.

7. Capabilities for International Screening are found to be Critical

As per the PBSA poll, 72% of the respondents consider it critical for businesses to have access to global screening services, regardless of location. Furthermore, in the next five years, 33% anticipate to hire more applicants who live or have lived in countries other than the company’s current location.

8. Majority of Businesses have no plans to change Background Screening Partners

81% of the respondents said neither they have shifted in the last year nor they are planning to do so in 2021 to any other background screening services. Respondents consider excellence, authenticity, timeliness, and affordability as most essential factor when choosing background screening company.

9. Background Checks are used by diversity of Companies

Companies of all sorts and magnitudes were included in the poll. Companies with fewer than 100 employees account for 42% of responders, while companies with 100-499 employees account for 32%. Privately held businesses make up 56% of the total, while non-profits make up 19%.

In order to ensure that businesses have the proper people and a good reputation in the industry, the strategy of conducting background screening Is being widely recognized. We at De RISC, with our advanced excellence in screening profession, facilitate you to set up a comprehensive screening program and streamline your hiring process.