Global Background Checks & Private Investigators

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International Background Checks: In-house or Outsourced?

International Background Checks: In-house or Outsourced?

Many human resources and recruiting departments ask the same question: Is it worthy to hire a third party for the employment background check investigations or can we save this money and work them in-house? Employment screening processes are complex but may seem fairly familiar to people who work in related areas, especially when it involves domestic hiring. Most talent acquisition specialists understand the procedures to conduct very basic background checks at a national level in their home countries, but they rarely know how to handle this delicate manner in a foreign country.

International employment screenings, when done properly, are real investigations that need to be conducted by trained professionals with boots on the ground in the country or countries where the candidate was born, has lived and/or worked.  Real risk mitigation requires professional investigators to properly verify a candidate.

To ensure a proper verification and that the relevant evidence is uncovered, investigators need to speak the language, understand the country’s laws and regulations and have access to the official sources of information such as government records, courts, past employers, schools, law enforcement databases, civil registrars, passports, etc. This means that local private investigators will have clear advantage over any remote HR team.

A recruiter in the United States or the U.K. cannot possibly verify a candidate’s background from Africa, Asia or South America. Each country is unique.

The following are some of the reasons why hiring a private investigation firm with global reach and local experts is advised.

Information cannot be accessed remotely in most countries

Being able to consult directly at the sources of the information is key to finding reliable data. If you have no idea of where to start searching, then you are in trouble. In countries like Russia or China accessing data while being abroad is impossible, even if you know where to search.  Local expertise is critical in international cases.

The language barrier can be a serious problem

Local investigators who are native to the country where you need the background check can speak the language, so they can obtain the information needed and they can understand it and interpret it correctly. How do you ask a previous employer or a government agency for data if you cannot communicate in their language? Translators are not always available, and language barriers may affect the results.  Local investigators on the ground in the country or countries where you need them is key to proper due diligence.

Full comprehension of local laws and regulations is a must

Background check regulations vary from place to place. The U.K. for example has very strict policies regarding the protection of personal data. Other countries have no regulation whatsoever over personal data. In fact, many developing countries don’t even have centralized or reliable databases. Therefore, you need a professional who knows the local laws and regulations knows how and where to gather evidence.

HR and talent acquisition specialists are not private investigators

Professional private investigators who specialize in international cases are experts in verifying the authenticity of documents, passports, government issued IDs, etc. Trained investigators have experience on how and where to verify employment, education, date of birth, criminal and court records, passport and documents, reputation, references, bankruptcy, and more.  The two jobs are completely different, and just as a private investigator would not make a good human resources professional, HR people should never play the role of an investigator.  Doing so is a reckless game.

Outsourcing international background checks to a private investigation firm with global coverage is an efficient way to reduce the risks associated with the hiring process. Trying to save money by doing an in-house screening can result in costly terrible consequences.  Save yourself and your company the headache.  Contact a professional investigator for a free international background check investigation quote today.

C. Wright
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