Background Investigations: Putting the Pieces Together

Backgroundcheckpuzzle Copy

Background Investigations: Putting the Pieces Together

How is it possible for a criminal to slip through the cracks when their employer says they did a background check?  The simple answer is this- not all background checks are created equal.

For us, proper background investigations look like this:

  1. SSN Trace
  2. Address Trace
  3. County level criminal records
  4. Multi-jurisdictional records
  5. National/State sex offender registry

(more details here)

They’re thorough and cover all the bases. You should be infinitely safer with someone who has passed all these levels.

If business owners truly care about the safety of their customers and even their fellow employees more than their bottom line, a background investigation like this would be a no brainer.

C.A.U.S.E. Certification takes it even one step further by comparing the results of all these screens to a matrix of convictions & amount of time since said convictions. This promotes objective decision making on whether or not a candidate is fit to work in homes or with vulnerable populations.

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However, here’s what business owners are saying to us:

“But we already do background checks and only pay $1.99/employee every year and that’s all we can afford”

You might as well not be doing one at all. Can you afford a million dollar lawsuit? Can you afford the negative publicity? 

“We don’t see the benefit of doing background checks…we’ve never had an incident”

Do we avoid wearing seat-belts until we get into a horrible accident? Do we wait to brush our teeth until we find 5 cavities? No, this is crazy talk. The only way to ensure your company’s livelihood and your customers’ safety is to KNOW who is working for you.

“We do a national background check on every employee”

There is no such thing as one, all-encompassing national background check. Don’t be fooled into thinking there is one.

This story is a frightening example of someone with a criminal history working for Sears and entering consumers’ homes and later stalking them. It’s eerily similar to Sue’s. The only difference is that a background check was done on him, but clearly not a thorough one.

Business owners:

Take true ownership of your business, your employees, and your customers. The bare minimum is not going to set you apart or keep your company thriving. Commit to thoroughly screening ALL employees, contractors and sub contractors. Commit to your customers’ safety.


Ask the right questions. Ask if the company background checks. Ask WHO they check. Ask WHEN they check. Ask which checks are performed (and refer back to the above list for comparison). Ask how they decide who is allowed into consumers’ homes. Lastly, commit to never being home alone. Invite a friend over for coffee. 


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