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How to Verify International Candidates – Real Background Checks

Posted On   date05/08/2015

How to Verify International Candidates – Real Background Checks

It is a common practice for employers to perform background checks on prospective employees, particularly if they are being hired into a position of trust. Human Resource personnel also conduct checks to ensure that the potential employee has the qualifications required for the position.  The problem is that many companies and individuals have become confused on what is an actual background check investigation, and what is needed to properly mitigate risk and be sure you’re hiring the right person for the job.

An employment background check conducted by professional investigators is not a matter of checking criminal records.  Checking criminal and court records alone, especially in developing countries, is not a prudent way to minimize your risk, and is certainly not an investigation.

This confusion has resulted from the fact that there are now many generic database search websites selling “background checks” for $9.99 and other misleading services, leading the public to believe that by searching a website a person could actually be properly verified?  Experienced HR professionals and companies that routinely hire overseas know that proper verification of a candidate requires more than just searching a database and checking the internet.  Proper vetting of international candidates requires the skills and resources of trained investigators who are based overseas.

Expert investigators conducting real international background check investigations verify the subject’s application or resume, verify employment and education history, check and obtain references, verify the authenticity of documents, ID and passports, check criminal, bankruptcy and court records, and screen the case for fraud.  In short, the service enables clients to make an informed and safe hiring decision in a high risk world.  Hiring overseas or someone with history in foreign countries is a high risk venture, and should be approached with caution.  Hiring a fraud can be a costly learning lesson!

Did you know that most criminals and people conducting fraud have no criminal record?

International recruiters and human resources staff that work for global companies have to deal every day with the problem of verifying if candidates.  Lying on a resume is common practice and over 40% of resumes contain false information.  The problem may not be so big when hiring locally because people are aware that when they are candidates to a job in the same city or country where they live, facts can be more easily verified. But this statistic of fraud is greater for international hires.

After all, who would take the time and effort to check an education claim in a university in China, Russia, or the Middle East when you don´t even speak the language? International private investigators will take over the task.  We are on the ground where you need us.  We have access to local records, we speak the language and we have years of training and investigation experience.

What is real pre-employment screening?

Human resources and recruiting professionals are great at what they do.  But, they are no private investigators, so they should not pretend to be.  Doing so can put a company at serious risk.  And there is the risk of relying on a database search compared to a real background check. Consider the risk for your company, and ask your team what is important for you.  Given your unique situation, our investigators can customize the investigation to focus on  your specific needs, and make sure the individual you’re hiring or doing business with is who he or she claims to be.

What can you expect from a real employment screening?

You can expect that a professional investigator will verify directly at the sources each piece of information provided. Resumes contain a lot of information, and all of it must be carefully checked. Every single item included as a previous employment experience and every education claim needs to be verified with the employer or school directly. Identity, criminal, bankruptcy and court records should be a part of the investigation as well, and in many countries getting this information is not that easy.  Checking and obtaining references and screening the case for fraud is important.  So is verifying ID, documents and passports, to ensure the person is legal to work and is not stealing an identity.  International private investigators get access and uncover clear evidence.

An important point to know is that background checks are dependent on each country’s legislation, so having investigators on the ground, who know the local law and the language, will be a key point to ensure that the investigation will bring back accurate and reliable information.

Be serious about protecting your company

Rigorous background check investigations for individuals applying for high corporate positions or high responsibility roles within global companies are becoming a standard practice nowadays, especially after big companies´ crisis related to corruption, bribery and other crimes.  Due diligence investigations can also save your reputation and company when more investigation is needed.

Professional background check investigations are not free, and not cheap.  International cases are more difficult, are higher risk, and can require significant investigation to properly verify a candidate.  Be realistic when comparing services, and remember you get what you pay for.

C. Wright
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