How Long Does a Background Check Take?

police check are often times one of the most important aspects of the hiring process for any new position. This is true even for positions that don’t require daily interaction with customers or clients. As such most employers want to know as much as possible about each prospective employee prior to making a final decision. The question then becomes, how long does a background check usually take?

Some employers have begun to conduct criminal checks as part of their background investigations on new hires. These criminal checks are sometimes conducted after the initial screening process has been completed. Other employers conduct their own criminal checks just as part of the pre-screening process. And in some cases, these employers may conduct all three types of background investigations on each and every candidate. Here’s how long background checks for criminal checks typically take:

Criminal checks – These are police check by the employer. Depending on what type of criminal checks are being conducted, this can take anywhere from one to three days. It all depends on the employer’s infrastructure, the number of criminal checks that need to be conducted, and the type of information that are required. Typically, criminal checks are performed only upon hiring someone to a sensitive position such as handling money or handling the company’s assets. These inspections are usually performed as part of the interview process and are not included in pre-hire background checks.

Employment Background Checks – Conducted by an independent agency. In order to determine how long does a background check take, this type of investigation typically requires a great deal of time. These investigations require contacting each agency that holds records for employment histories, criminal checks, military records, driving records, credit checks, and financial data such as tax returns and bank statements. Then, depending on the nature of the case, information from these sources must be compiled into a comprehensive report. Typically, this type of background checks is performed only when employment is sought after and there is a good reason to suspect the prospective employee has a criminal history.

Online Background Checks – Some online background checks services offer turnaround times of up to 24 hours. Many online databases allow people to run federal, state, and county searches in the comfort of their own homes. In addition to conducting federal and state criminal checks, these online databases also offer birth, death, marriage, divorce, and adoption records. Depending on the type of information you need, some online databases may also provide financial data such as income and credit reports.

turnaround times of up to five business days are usually the norm for most online databases when it comes to conducting federal, state, and county criminal background checks. When hiring a private detective or hiring an investigator to conduct an investigation, your best option is usually to hire a company with a nationwide reach and a reputation for fast and reliable results. Most investigators are able to obtain most types of information through standard techniques within five business days. In addition, the turnaround times are usually consistent across different types of investigations, which makes finding someone’s past employment history much easier.

If, after five business days, you still have not heard back from the background investigation company, it may be prudent to send them a letter detailing your circumstances. You may need to provide additional information or request a written statement stating that you don’t require any additional information. If you are only interested in finding out the status of a candidate, you may not need additional information. However, a quick email can tell you if you will hear back.

Online background checks usually take less than five business days to complete depending on the depth of research that was conducted. In addition, these searches can be performed even if you do not have any type of specific information to begin with. The investigator may only have to provide your name as the person of interest to find out what your current address is or to check a public record to see if the person ever lived at this address in the past. If you were looking to find out more, a paid search would likely be the fastest method.