An application is the first step to getting to know a candidate. The next step is when you are able to have an in-person interview with the candidate and see what they’re like in person. Interviews are usually an opportunity to get a deeper look at the candidate, analyze their mannerisms, learn about their personality and ask them questions that weren’t on the application.

While you may feel that you know a candidate after an interview, do you really? Or do you just know what they told you?

While your default reaction may be to just take a candidate at their word, this can prove to be dangerous for your business. Pre-employment screenings exist to prevent business owners and hiring managers from trusting a candidate blindly. These screenings allow you to verify both information that your candidate already disclosed- about past work experience and education – and information that you were unable to ask previously – about their criminal record or credit.

When hiring a new employee, you can never be too careful. To prevent yourself from hiring a dangerous or ill-fit candidate to work for your company, you should always perform pre-employment screenings to get to know them better first. When you truly know your candidate, you can decide whether or not hiring them will be the best decision. However, you can only truly know them when you have all of your questions answered and verified.

But how exactly can pre-employment screenings help you to know your candidate better?

Learn Whether Your Candidate is Honest

With surveys these days showing that nearly eight in every ten candidates has false information on their resume, you should always verify candidate’s information. Pre-employment screenings help you get to know your candidate better in many ways, but one of the most important benefits of pre-employment screenings is being able to tell whether your candidate is honest.

Different types of pre-employment screening checks, such as background checks or criminal history checks, can provide you with different information which you may prioritize differently. For example, you might react differently to learning that a candidate told a small lie on their resume about how long they worked for a specific company versus if they told a lie about whether or not they’d ever been convicted of a serious crime. However, both of these lies are indications that your candidate may not be honest. At first, you may not find so much fault in white lies on resumes.

Think about their implications. If a candidate lies on their resume, what else will they lie about? Lies can bring a company down if you aren’t careful. Candidates can tell you anything on an application or in an interview, but pre-employment screenings are really the only way that you can tell if a candidate is honest.

Decide if Your Candidate is Qualified

There may be certain qualifications that you’re looking for in employees. Maybe you can only hire candidates with a certain skill set or who have a specific qualification or degree. Most likely, you’ve asked for this information on the application, but what if the candidate accidentally left this question blank? Or maybe they claimed to have the correct qualifications, but you aren’t sure.

There are types of pre-employment background checks that help you verify a candidate’s employment history, certifications, and educational background. Perhaps your company only hires candidates who graduated from Ivy League schools or who received a specific degree. Before hiring a candidate, it’s crucial that you determine whether or not they’re qualified. Verifying this information doesn’t show any doubt in the candidate, so it’s nothing that you should feel guilty about.

Find Out if Your Candidate is a Liability

There are many ways that a candidate can be a liability to your company. If they had violent tendencies in their previous workplaces, they could pose a serious safety risk to your current employees. If they had ever been accused or convicted of stealing from previous jobs, they could pose a danger to your entire company.

Similarly, if they injure anyone while on the job and have injured someone in the same way previously, they could be a safety and financial hazard. Have you ever heard of “negligent hiring?” This is something that a company can be accused of if an employee injures someone, such as in a car accident, and they’ve been in several injury-causing car accidents in the past. Victims can claim that the employee was hired negligently because the company should have known about their dangerous past.

By performing various types of pre-employment screenings, you can learn whether or not your candidate is a liability to your company. While trusting someone may be in your nature, it’s important to verify all information about a candidate’s background before they are hired, to protect both yourself and your company.

Pre-employment screenings are a fantastic resource for several reasons. One of these reasons is that they allow employers to get to know their candidates both personally and professionally before they’re hired. You can learn about your candidate’s personality, such as whether they’re honest, as well as whether they’re professional background, such as whether they’re qualified for the position. Furthermore, pre-employment screenings can also help you learn if a candidate is a financial or physical danger to the workplace. Applications and interviews can only tell you so much about a candidate- before you make any hiring decisions, be sure to verify all of your candidate’s information so you can get to know them better.