| 3 min read

6 Reasons Your Background Check Could Be Delayed

Successful hiring largely depends on speed and efficiency. After all, every day an important position goes unfilled is a day your company isn’t operating at its full potential. When delays are out of your hands, such as during the background screening process, it can be frustrating not knowing what’s causing the problem. Here are some of the factors that could lead to your background checks being delayed.

1. Inaccurate and/or incomplete data

When employers and candidates make mistakes or provide only partial information during the background check data entry process, such as entering an inaccurate digit in their social security number or misspelling a name, the entire screening process can be delayed. In most cases, these oversights are not detected until midway through the screening process, if at all, and many services need to be restarted for accuracy. Further, with verifications (whether education or employment), if incorrect companies are listed i.e. the company the applicant worked “at” as opposed to the company they worked “for”, meaning the company who paid them, your screening agency may have to reach out to multiple companies as well as the applicant before obtaining an accurate result, slowing down completion time.  To avoid such problems, advise data entry staff and applicants to be careful entering all candidate information. Good information yields quicker results.

2. Varying federal/state regulations

The laws surrounding background checks can vary from one region to another, leading to extra quality assurance if your candidate has a connection to multiple jurisdictions i.e. living in one state and working in another. Since navigating these regulatory issues without creating a compliance violation is a must, your screening agency is often putting the expert touch on every report, ensuring only compliant information is reported back to you.

3. Delays caused by outside parties

Regardless of the speed of your employment screening agency, CRAs are often at the mercy of parties on the other end to obtain results. For example, previous employers, colleges, and other private parties may not respond to such requests in a timely manner. Your screening agency should have robust processes in place to ensure a high likelihood of response, but even so, the employer or educational institution may not respond quickly, regardless of the sufficient attempts made. When such delays crop up, your screening partner should be keeping you posted in real-time through your portal or otherwise.

4. Weather delays

While it’s easy to assume most processes will be automated, there is still no nationwide database of all the information that one could desire from a background check. As such, screening providers rely on researchers and local offices to obtain a full background check on an individual. If these offices are unexpectedly closed (due to inclement weather, for example), requests will go unanswered until the staff returns.

5. Court Record Access

Though many jurisdictions offer public and private online portals to seek out criminal history record information quickly and efficiently, there are still many counties/states that do not. This means that if a certain area requires a researcher to hand over a list of names to a clerk and the clerk has to pull files or complete searches, your screening agency must wait for that clerk. Many courts, such as in CA, have also cut staff and only complete searches a couple of days a week which results in a back-up of requests which CRAs have no control over. State repositories may also have their own process to obtain results, such as VA, where a request with a check must be snail-mailed. And despite the great relationships our amazing researcher network has with the courts and their clerks, clerks do not want to feel rushed. The more they are rushed, the slower they often go. That said, at a minimum, your background check provider should proactively give updates on delays with as much detail as possible in an effort to provide transparency.

6. Confirmation of results

Chane Solutions goes to great lengths to ensure that all results provided are completely accurate and up to date. Especially when potentially negative information is uncovered, or identifiers are missing, we go the extra mile to guarantee accurate results and fair treatment for your candidates. For example, Chane will contact courts directly as well as reach out to applicants if there are any incomplete or inaccurate identifiers on criminal cases to ensure maximum possible accuracy. Though you’re no doubt eager to see the final results, this necessary delay allows us to keep our promise to you as your screening partner and eliminates the possibility of you taking unfair (and illegal) adverse action against an employee or candidate.

Though delays can be frustrating, you should never settle for a second-rate screening process that cuts corners. At Chane Solutions, we take pride in offering world-class background checks to businesses in need. Even better, our services are fully customizable to meet the unique demands of companies of all sizes in all industries. To learn more about our services, contact us today.


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