A Guide to Candidate Testing and Verification, Part 2: Reference and Background Checks

By Beth Kempton,
May 16, 2019

Any time your team has an open role, it’s critical to complete each step of the hiring process. A key step is interviews to gauge each candidate’s fit for the open role. But no matter how well a candidate does throughout the interview process, it’s also important to complete detailed testing and verification. Without these steps, you risk hiring employees would could be a liability to the business, or not fit from a skills standpoint.

In the first installment of this two-part series, we walked through the benefits and best practices  for two testing and verification hiring steps – prescreen surveys and skills tests. In this second part, we’ll share an overview of reference and background checks – two hiring steps your team should always complete before formally extending a job offer.

Background Checks

Your business needs to hire trustworthy employees who can offer top-notch customer service and drive revenue, so background checks are a critical final step in the hiring practice. Background checks should come back clean, instilling confidence in your decision to hire.

If any red flags show up on a background check – such as a suspended driver’s license for a candidate applying to a role that requires driving – this will be a clear sign you should move forward with another candidate who has a clean record. An accurate background check report will provide peace of mind that each prospective employee has a history free from negligence or other activities that may put your customers – and business – at risk.

Background checks can be automated with the right hiring process in place – and this can be made possible by partnering with a recruitment CRM platform. To automate the process, candidates can submit the required personal information and the rest of the process is taken care of automatically. Hireology’s platform helps you select the required background checks and obtains candidate authorization. It also emails candidates if they need to take any action, and you’ll be notified as well to simplify the entire process. This leads to timely turnaround of applicant screening results, eliminates errors and ensures each new hire can be fully vetted before you extend an offer.

Reference Checks

Up to 85 percent of job applicants lie on their resumes. This is why your team needs to complete reference checks to verify each candidate’s previous work experience. Many employers make the mistake of skipping this step because it can be frustrating and time consuming – hiring or HR managers often end up playing phone tag with references, which takes time on their end and causing the hiring process to drag on for too long. And given today’s competitive hiring market, some employers might think they’ll lose candidates to other opportunities while waiting to hear back from reference.

By partnering with a recruitment CRM platform, your team can automated reference checks, making both your job and the candidate experience more streamlined. Candidates simply provide their reference contact information and surveys are automatically sent to each contact, saving time that would have otherwise been spent scheduling and completing calls. And once you hear back from references, you can rest assured knowing candidates have the experience they’ve outlined in their resumes or during the interview process.

Automating candidate screening steps like hiring and background checks can help your team cut down time to hire significantly and secure top talent before the competition.

Are you interested in learning more about how reference and background checks? can help you build the best team at a time of historically-low unemployment? Hireology can help – see a demo today. And for more information on candidate testing and verification, read the first part of this series, focused on prescreen surveys and skills tests.

About the Author

Beth is the content strategist on Hireology’s marketing team, responsible for creating compelling blog posts, eBooks, marketing materials and other content. Her background includes five years of experience at a B2B digital marketing agency, where she crafted content for a variety of clients, including several in the HR technology space. Before beginning her career, Beth attended Loyola University Chicago, where she studied advertising and public relations.

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