Employers have the right to check the background of whoever is working with them. You need to make sure they will be a better addition to your company in meeting your corporate goals. Remember, employees also have the right to their privacy. Hence, background checking should be conventional. 

Employer background checks are considered as “consumer reports” under the Fair Credit Reporting Act in the United States. FCRA is federal legislation that establishes a set of requirements for consumer reporting. Contractor background checks are a sure way to avoid possible negligence in hiring claims. 

Further, the FCRA regulates the accuracy and the private information in the consumer reports. Consumer reports are “any written, oral, and other communication of any information by a consumer reporting agency bearing a consumer’s creditworthiness, credit standing, credit capacity, character, general reputation, personal characteristics, or mode of living which is used or expected to be used or collected in whole or in part for the purpose of serving as a factor in establishing the consumer’s eligibility.” 

Apart from credit records, the FCRA also expands to criminal and civil records of the employee. 

Your workforce keeps your company functioning. You seek a trustworthy employee that will help you achieve your business goals, both short-term and long-term. However, you can’t only depend on your background checking through resumes or documents submitted. 

A 2020 survey shows that 93% of people were affirmative that they knew someone who lied on their resume. A few of its topmost reasons are related to work experience (27%), skills (18%), and duties (17%). However, only 31% admitted to having lied about the content in their resumes. These are out of 1,051 American respondents who responded to this 2020 survey. 

When the same individuals were asked if they had personally lied on their resumes, the number changed to 36% who confessed about this. This is around a 57% decrease when the question was personalized. Stretching work experience is one of the top lies they included in their resumes. 

Over this, employers must learn how to dig further in assessing all their applicants. Note the following few ways to do a background check on your contractor in a conventional way. 

  1. Know the Basic Background Check

The basics of the background check include the criminal records of the applicant, their social security validation, address history, sex offender registry status, and any possible inclusion on the terror watch list. 

  1. Develop a Background Check Policy 

Ensure that you have a written background check policy to share with your applicants. This clarifies how you will manage the background check necessary for employee hiring decisions. This gives assurance across your company that you use a fair and transparent employee screening process. 

  1. Always Check Your Existing Policy

Your Contractor’s background checking process must adhere to the guidelines of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) in your respective state and localities. Navigate these carefully to avoid fines, settlements, and lawsuits.  Procure legal counsel in reviewing your policy. 

  1. Communicate With Your Candidate 

Candidates have rights under the FCRA to be notified regarding the background check. You provide the candidate a notice in advance that you will conduct an employment screening and a copy of your assessment. 

Provide ample time, around five days, to let the candidate file a dispute for possible inaccuracy of your results if you decide not to hire them. 

Why Is There a Need to do a Contractor Background Check?

Security might be one of the reasons why employers apply background checks before hiring a contractor. This is the employer’s way of verifying the authenticity and integrity of the contractor for hire.

  1. Ensures Consistency 

The person assigned to review these reports must establish a reference check or cursory database inquiry that they can refer to during the screening process. This person must follow the same working and screening standards in catering applicants. This is important so that there is consistency and uniformity in your guidelines. For instance, in reviewing an applicant’s criminal record, you may review applicants identically and follow the matrix in evaluating your background checking per position. In this case, all applicants are given the same treatment. 

  1. Protect Your Brand Reputation 

Background checking is crucial since it helps you and your company’s image and reputation throughout the process. This ensures that you keep yourself, your company, and your employees secure against safety and legal issues. 

By running a Contractor background check, you will be confident in hiring someone who will be a good representation of your company and the services that you offer. 

  1. Keep Your Employees Safe

If you know your contractor’s history at work or as a person, you can set measures in advance to avoid facing too much exposure to physical harm, financial damage, and negligence claims. On the other hand, background checking also ensures that both your old and new employees follow the company policies, including compliance with safety standards. 

  1. Reduce Further Costs

If you missed hiring the right candidate for your vacancy, or you hired the wrong applicant, then your employee turnover rate will possibly increase. If ever you hired an employee for a specific position, and have already paid for training, wages, and benefits, termination of their employment would have you doing the process all over again. To calculate such costs, professional help regarding loans and estimates is recommended.


Hiring a contractor or a person for any position, you must ensure that this person has the morale to work for you and can help you achieve all your corporate goals. That is why you need to check how capable they are beyond the resume or documents they submit to you. 

While you want to know as much as possible about your applicant, you must conform to legal rules since every person is entitled to their right to privacy. Hence, you need to do your background check in compliance with the state laws and also with the candidates themselves.