Full-Service vs. DIY Background Check Programs

hand pointing to resume
November 8, 2017

The shark species, as we know them, have been around for about 400 million years; they were dwelling the oceans when dinosaurs were roaming the land. Growing up on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, there is a saying: “We provoke a shark every time we get in the water where sharks happen to be. The ocean is not our territory – it is theirs.”

When choosing a background check service, the first question to ask is: Is this my territory? Do I know and understand the complex laws surrounding employee background screening? To avoid costly lawsuits, corporations must ensure that their employment background checks are carried out in a consistent, legal, and respectful manner. Do you and your organization have the legal expertise, time, and resources to thoroughly perform legally compliant employment background checks?

We believe outsourcing employment background screening results in lowered costs, improved outcomes, and improved legal protection for your business.

When outsourcing employee background screening, there are two types of screening service options:

  1. Full-service background check companies that perform all of the investigation work for you.
  2. Do-It-Yourself or “DIY” background check websites that provide instant results and allow you to conduct online searches on your own.

There are several differences between a Full-Service Background Check Company vs. a “DIY” online option. Full-Service Background Check Companies:

  • Offer comprehensive screening solutions and do all of the research for you.  
  • Search online databases and make in-person courthouse visits to check for criminal history.
  • Verify past employment and education, as well as take a “deep-dive” into other areas of a candidate’s background.
  • Abide by the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), which governs how background checks must be conducted. This includes requiring the job candidate’s consent to conduct the background check while conducting a much more thorough and complete search than a website that provides instant results.

The “DIY” option is cheaper and faster, but not FCRA-compliant. “DIY” sites often provide incomplete or error-filled results and do not include education or employment verification services.

Just like there is great danger every time we get in the water where sharks happen to be, businesses are vulnerable to lawsuits and fines when they make employment decisions based off inaccurate or incomplete information.

Contributed by Ricky Rayborn of LABORCHEX.

Through the Michigan Chamber partnership with LABORCHEX, members get discounted pricing to employment background screening services. To learn more, please email Kym Lewis or call her at 1-800-880-0366.