What Do Background Checks Do?

What Do Background Checks Do?

The question “What do background checks do?” is increasingly significant for prospective clients in the process of choosing a new background screening provider. A background check is a pivotal tool for employers and organizations, offering a comprehensive review of an individual’s history to ensure decisions are made with the best possible information. For those in need of such services, it’s crucial to select a company that is not only comprehensive, fast, and affordable but also compliant with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and local and state laws.

The Purpose of Background Checks for Employers

Background checks serve several critical functions for employers:

  • Verify Candidate Information: They confirm the accuracy of information provided by job applicants, including employment history, education, and certifications.
  • Safety and Security: Background checks help maintain a safe working environment by identifying individuals with criminal histories that may pose a risk to employees, customers, and business operations.
  • Compliance: Certain industries have specific regulatory requirements for employment, and background checks ensure compliance with these standards.
  • Reduce Turnover: By verifying the qualifications and background of candidates, employers can make more informed hiring decisions, leading to reduced turnover and better employee fit.


  • Approximately 72% of employers conduct background checks on all job candidates.
  • Employers who implement comprehensive background screening processes experience a 55% lower turnover rate compared to those who do not.

How Background Checks Work

Background checks follow a structured process:

  1. Consent: Obtaining written consent from the individual is a critical first step, in compliance with FCRA regulations.
  2. Collection of Information: Personal details such as full name, date of birth, and Social Security number are collected.
  3. Research: The background screening provider accesses various public and private records to compile relevant information.
  4. Verification: Information obtained from these sources is verified for accuracy. This step is crucial to ensure the reliability of the background check.
  5. Compilation of Report: A detailed report summarizing the findings is prepared and provided to the employer.

Common Components of a Typical Background Check

  • Social Security Trace: Verifies the individual’s identity and traces their address history.
  • Criminal Records Check: Searches for any criminal history at local, state, and national levels.
  • Employment Verification: Confirms past employment history, including job titles and tenure.
  • Education Verification: Validates educational achievements and qualifications.
  • Credit History Check: Reviews credit behavior and financial responsibility, particularly relevant for positions involving financial management.

How Far Back a Background Check Goes

The lookback period for a background check can vary, but typically, criminal background checks cover a period of 7 to 10 years. Some states, however, have specific regulations that may limit the scope of what can be reported.

What Typically Shows Up in the Results

Results can include a wide array of information, such as criminal records, employment history, educational background, credit history, and more. The specific findings will depend on the scope of the background check requested.

How Verifications Are Done

Verifications are performed by directly contacting the institutions or employers listed by the individual or through accessing official records. This ensures the accuracy of the information provided, including employment history and educational credentials.


Understanding “What do background checks do?” highlights the importance of these checks in making informed decisions for hiring and other purposes. For organizations seeking a reliable background screening provider, EDIFY Background Screening stands as a qualified choice. Our services are designed to be thorough, efficient, affordable, and in compliance with legal standards, ensuring you receive accurate and comprehensive background check reports.

We encourage those in need of background screening services to consider EDIFY Background Screening. With our advanced technology and experienced team, we are equipped to provide detailed background investigations. Contact us at 336-283-0237 or visit www.edifyscreening.com to learn more about how we can assist you in conducting efficient and affordable background checks. Partner with us to ensure your background screening needs are met with the highest standards of accuracy and professionalism.

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