Secrets of the Job Hunt


Monday, May 12, 2008

ADP on Background Checks

Hiring managers preferred pre-employment background checks into criminal records more than any other screening tool in 2007. According to Automatic Data Processing, Inc.’s annual Screening Index, which evaluates both hiring trends and employment screening, found that of the almost 5.8 million background check conducted by employers last year that criminal background checks were more popular that any other type. The usage of this particular type of applicant screening was used over three times more often than any other.

According to the Screening Index, the employers who are ADP’s clients carried out approximately 1.7 million criminal background checks during the course of 2007. Second in popularity were investigations into candidates’ driving histories. Only slightly less than 500,000 of these were conducted.

Jim Brown, Senior Division Vice President/General Manager of ADP Pre-Employment Services, says that the annual index “gives us a glimpse of what is happening in the pre-employment arena, and allows us to share this valuable data with our clients.” He went on to say that “it is interesting to see which screening tools employers are using to find the best possible candidates for positions in their organization and the frequency with which they may encounter background screening hits.”

According to this year’s Screening Index, 10 percent of background checks came back with at least one negative hit on them. The data also showed that 40 percent of applicants who had their credit history looked into had one or more marks against them on their credit reports.

Employers also found out last year that more than one in three applicants had violations or convictions on their driving records. In the last seven years, 10 percent of these candidates had their licenses suspended, revoked or withdrawn.

The was a significant number of candidates that provided references which conflicted with information they had previously given. Of these, one out of every twenty resulted in the individual cited as a reference making one of more negative comments about the applicant in question.

This is one reason that it is important to chose references wisely and to make sure that they are comfortable singing praises to a hiring manager before providing their information. ADP’s Screening Index also found that 6 percent of candidates had a criminal record that contained a mark from within the last seven years.

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