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The Imperative of International Background Checks and the Critical Role of CRAs

As our world continues to become more interconnected, performing international background checks is more important than ever. The reality of business operations too is expanding beyond national borders. This globalization has ushered in a fresh era of workforce diversity, with individuals frequently living, working, or being educated in different countries. This increased global mobility and transnational background of applicants present a unique set of challenges for companies during their hiring process. The principal challenge is conducting an effective background check to ensure a candidate’s honesty, integrity, and suitability for a given role.


Background checks serve as an essential tool for employers to verify the credentials of applicants. Typically, these checks involve examining an individual's criminal record, credit score, educational qualifications, and employment history within the United States. However, as a growing number of applicants possess international experience, the need for including international background checks in your employee screening program becomes clearer.


Including international background checks in the employee screening program has several benefits:


Mitigating Risks

The trend of global mobility has seen a surge, with more individuals choosing to work or study in foreign countries. This experience often enriches an applicant's profile, bringing diverse perspectives and skills to your team. However, it also means that a part of their history exists outside of U.S. jurisdiction. A domestic background check might not reveal necessary information from an applicant's time spent abroad. Consequently, international background checks become crucial to gain a comprehensive understanding of an applicant's past.


Ensuring Compliance

Depending on the nature of your business, failing to conduct comprehensive background checks, including international checks, could leave your organization vulnerable to legal repercussions. For instance, if you're involved in sectors like education, healthcare, finance, or government, you could be held liable for negligent hiring if an employee's undisclosed past leads to issues. Moreover, for businesses dealing with sensitive information, international background checks are essential to ensure compliance with international laws and standards.


Verification of Foreign Credentials

The validation of education, employment history, and professional credentials obtained in other countries is a vital reason for conducting international background checks. Diploma mills and resume fraud are prevalent issues worldwide. To avoid hiring an individual with fraudulent credentials, it is essential to verify all international qualifications independently.


Building Trust

These checks allow employers to make informed decisions, fostering a trust-based relationship from the outset. This ensures a reliable, transparent, and safe working environment.


Role of Consumer Reporting Agencies (CRA) in International Background Checks


Despite the clear advantages of conducting international background checks, they can be complex and time-consuming, particularly for companies with limited resources. This is where a reputable, experienced screening Consumer Reporting Agency (CRA), like MyHRScreens comes in.


Here's how CRAs can help with international background checks:


Comprehensive Data Access

CRAs have access to a broad range of data sources and can carry out thorough international checks efficiently. They can verify academic records, employment history, criminal records, and credit reports from other countries, providing a detailed and accurate account of a candidate’s background.


Legal Compliance

CRAs are well-versed in the laws and regulations around background checks both domestically and internationally. They can help businesses stay compliant with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and other relevant legislation while also adhering to the privacy laws of the country where the background information is being requested.


When conducting international background checks on candidates that live in countries with data protection laws, international regulations may also apply. For example, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) regulates the transfer and processing of personal data to the US from Europe. Some international data protection requirements are country-specific, requiring specific documentation to search criminal records or verify credentials. In some cases, organizations may be required to sign a Data Processing Agreement (DPA) before a global background check begins.


Comprehensive Screening

CRAs conducts a detailed investigation into a candidate's history, encompassing areas such as criminal records, education and employment verifications, credit checks, and identity validations. This comprehensive check extends beyond U.S. borders, offering employers a full picture of an applicant's history.


Speed and Efficiency

By leveraging advanced technology and international partnerships CRAs such as MyHRScreens can expedite the background check process without compromising accuracy. They can deliver results promptly, enabling employers to make timely hiring decisions.


Including international background checks in your employee screening program is more important than ever in today's globalized workforce. Businesses need to be diligent, ensuring they protect their company, employees, reputation, and comply with legal obligations. CRAs, such as MyHRScreens, play a vital role in this process, offering expertise and resources to conduct thorough, compliant, and efficient international background checks. By investing in this comprehensive approach to background screening, businesses can confidently build a workforce that is as diverse as it is secure.


Let MyHRScreens Help You Navigate International Screening Laws

While not all CRAs provide access to international background checs, the team at MyHRScreens can provide you with expert resources to provide you with reassurance you need when hiring employees that have lived or worked outside of the United States. Learn more about how we can help you by contacting us today at 866-899-8970 ext 118, klewis@myhrscreens.com or scheduling our consultation HERE.


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