Top 5 Reasons Why an Online Background Check Just Isn’t Enough

News and Notes - November 7, 2017 6:56 pm

Human resource managers have a crucial task of vetting selected applicants for posts in a company, and many of them perform online background checks on such candidates before hiring. ‘Online background check’ refers to performing background checks on a person using the individual’s online activities and information regarding him or her. A background check aids employers in determining whether an employee is really who he or she purports to be. For confirmation purposes a check is run of the information the applicant had included in the application for the job. Routine background checks have proved to be more expensive, making companies resort to online background checks. However, simple online background checks do not do enough, and therefore they need to dig deeper about potential employees. The following are the five primary reasons as to why an online background check is not enough and that there is need to do a significant test.

Incomplete and false online information.

Sometimes online information can be false and misleading, or perhaps there is not enough to give beneficial details about the employee. For instance, it is not possible to determine forged documents in a simple online check. It has been on record that most of the employers lack a tolerance policy on false accusations on the applicant’s resume or application. Therefore, rather than carrying out a simple online background check, institutions should continue performing an offline examination to determine the validity of the information found online about employees.

Continuing monitoring is easier because of the ever-evolving criminal history.

The running of new online background checks at intervals for every single employee is more complicated, expensive, and can be a daunting process. Every company needs to shield itself and consumers with the safety and trust of employees. Therefore, since the criminal history and truth of an employee evolves day and night, doing a single online check is not enough. Instead, institutions should invest in policies which call for continued updates for the business to keep an eye.

Comfort costs

Most employers give preference to the accuracy and security of professional screening, given the shortcomings involved with online checks. This helps them protect the employees’ welfare and that of the company. That expense and time involved in the comprehensive collection of information by far outweigh potential costs in hiring bad employees and encouraging more productive and safer workplaces.

Inaccuracy of online information

Online background checks merely verify the information as given on resumes and job applications. Unfortunately, most applicants lie about their credentials and experience. With that, employers should not only rely on online background checks, but also do a follow-up offline to verify the information. Employers are entitled to the responsibility and a right to the verification of the information provided by an applicant. Keep in mind – people do make mistakes and experience problems, if an individual is not given a chance to explain himself or herself, the person can easily be misunderstood which can in turn lead to denial of the job. In a simple online background check, past problems and mistakes will not be uncovered, however, in the job interview, one can give a frank and genuine explanation of them. This provides the individual with a chance to explain what happened and therefore an opportunity to get the job. Some employers know that it is not possible to have a clean record.

Unavailability of references.

References are very crucial while conducting a background check on a potential employee or contractor. References make sure that the applicant’s services are sincere and reliable. Free online background checks do not uncover references. Vetting and contacting references is a custom project that requires more social prowess, resources, and expertise and legal constraints of screening.


Dose, A. (n.d.). Why a Basic Background Check Isn’t Enough for Employees. Retrieved from
Why Free Background Checks Aren’t Enough – InfoMart. (2015, June 2). Retrieved from