Why Do Some Background Checks
Take Longer Than I Expect?
By Glenn and Rose Maree Hammer
The next most common Background Check delay occurs when obtaining information from record repositories. Record holders maintain and release data in a variety of ways. While many records are computerized, many others are maintained on microfiche, microfilm, and paper. Our researchers gather data directly where possible, but some requests for information must be made by mail, fax or voice mail, requiring that we wait for the record source to gather and release the data "at their own pace." Some organizations close for extended periods of time during holidays or between school terms, again slowing the research process.
Many record sources only provide our researchers with a name index to identify potential data. Each name variation (for example, Bill and William) may be located in a different part of the index and must be searched separately. If an applicant has a common name, the researcher may find many records that need to be reviewed for identification.
Finally, once the data has been identified, the information must be properly compiled into a report for the employer based upon the various (and differing) state and federal laws, which determine the information that can be reported.
About the Authors: Glenn and Rose Maree Hammer are the principals of A Matter of Fact, a California-based employment background check firm. www.amof.info
For more Background Check Frequently Asked Questions, see Background Check FAQ.
Note: This information is for educational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for professional legal advice.