The world is getting smaller every day. Ease of travel, remote work, and other trends have people living, working, and learning farther and farther from home. Whether your business is going global, your organization is attracting a more diverse workforce, or for some other reason, the likelihood of your background check process involving an international component is ever increasing.
Why You Need Background Checks
As an employer, you are responsible for implementing safe hiring practices that protect your assets, customers, employees, and reputation. And safe hiring practices require background checks to do the following:
- Verify an individual’s identity
- Confirm information provided on a resume, including work experience, education, and professional credentials
- Uncover past criminal behavior that is relevant and poses a potential risk to the position at hand
Failure to do this type of due diligence about new hires exposes employees to the risk of potentially costly negligent hiring claims and lawsuits. Publicly traded companies may also need to answer to shareholders when hiring oversights to lead to costly problems.
When Do You Need an International Background Check?
All job applicants need to undergo a United States pre-employment background screening when applying to work in a U.S. company. That’s pretty straightforward, and professional background screening agencies are well-equipped to run these checks.
But, in the following circumstances, the background screener needs to expand their search outside U.S. borders:
- When the applicant is a foreign national applying to work in the U.S.
- When the applicant is a foreign national applying to work for a U.S. company with offices or subsidiaries outside the U.S.
- When the applicant is a U.S. citizen who has lived, worked, or studied outside the U.S.
- When the applicant is a U.S. citizen and has traveled frequently overseas.
- When the applicant is a U.S. citizen who lives part time in another country.
If safe hiring requires the whole picture, sometimes you’ve got to look internationally. When individuals meet these criteria, international background checks are as essential as domestic checks. For example, your future CFO might have a clean credit record in the U.S. but have a disastrous credit history in the Caribbean, or your director of IT may have an unblemished criminal record here but be wanted for credit card fraud in Brazil.
Because the need for a global screen could arise unexpectedly, it’s wise to partner with a background screening agency with international experience. As you might expect, international background screens are complicated and require particular skills and resources. The ability to speak the language, have boots on the ground in the country to seek out records, and have staff working around the clock regardless of time zone difference are just a few of the things your screening partner needs to bring to the table in order to assist effectively with global background checks.
Talk to your screening agency today about their international capabilities to make sure you’re ready to leverage the global economy.