By Katie Kulp


The hiring process, as a whole, can get complicated and lengthy for managers. For this reason, simplifying every part of the procedure is crucial. Since delayed background screening results can slow your hiring decision, it is important to understand some of the most frequent causes of these delays.

Inaccurate applications

The most common cause of delayed results is inaccurate applications. Such errors are not always due to dishonesty on the applicant’s part; many, if not most, inaccurate applications are a result of a misunderstanding or poor memory on the candidate’s side. Regardless, incomplete information will result in delays while the screening agency sorts through the details.  To avoid these delays, be sure to educate your applicants in advance about the importance of providing accurate data.

Lack of immediate public access to records

Though there are some efforts are being made to centralize the storage of background information and criminal histories in certain areas, many many local courts, state agencies and police jurisdictions have not yet made their records available publicly or without the assistance of a live clerk. If an applicant has a record or has lived in one of these areas with limitations, your background screening agency may need to make additional efforts to complete a search.

Non-negative drug tests

Non-negative drug tests take extra time to process and confirm. It’s worth noting, however, that these delays do not necessarily indicate that your applicant uses controlled substances illegally. Since some drug tests return with false-positive results, labs must retest every positive result to confirm that no errors have been made. Applicants may also need to be contacted in the event that he/she is prescribed a specific drug so that accurate results can be reported. Either way, non-negative drug tests generally take additional days to process.

Slow responses from educators and employers

Employers, colleges, and educational institutions generally comply with requests for background information, but there is no legal requirement for them to do so in a timely fashion. If the registrar’s office at an applicant’s university is closed, or they simply failed to process a transcript correctly, the background screen will be stalled until the errors are corrected. A reputable screening company, however, will work diligently to ensure that such offices cooperate as soon as possible.

Unnecessary screening requests

Since you want to know as much as possible about your applicants before making a hiring decision, it’s easy to get carried away when requesting background checks. The searches you choose to perform, however, can drastically affect the length of time you will wait for results. Some checks can be performed instantly, some take several days, while still others can delay for a week or more. To avoid unnecessary delays, and as a background screening best practice, only perform the checks that are relevant to the position you are filling.

At Chane Solutions, we pride ourselves on providing fully flexible, 100% customizable screening services. We promise to work with you to ensure high-quality results and rapid turnaround. Contact us today to learn more about our tailor-made background checks.

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