Education verification checks are an essential part of the background check process. They can catch candidates lying about their credentials and are accommodating to industries requiring specific degrees or professional licenses.
With a candidate’s signed consent, a third party can verify all educational claims, from high school and GED equivalents to their highest degree earned. Information from education verification can help employers find the best job candidates.
Educational background checks are vital for certain types of positions. For example, jobs in regulated industries such as healthcare, education, and finance require a specific level of qualification. If an employee claims to have a particular degree, certification, or license that they don’t have, your company could be at risk for legal liability.
Unfortunately, embellishment of education is pretty standard on resumes and applications. Nearly 60% of hiring managers have reported catching fabrications on job applications and resumes. This can be especially troublesome for jobs in which a person’s education, credentials, and experience are critical to the success of a project or position.
Education verification involves contacting the school, college, or university a candidate attended to verify that they earned the degrees they claim on their application and resume. This check can include confirmation of the degree, diploma, or GED certificate awarded, the dates of attendance, the principal or field of study, and any honors or awards received.
Some employers conduct their education verification by directly requesting the transcript or proof of a candidate’s degree from the institution. However, this is often time-consuming, and it may violate student privacy regulations. For this reason, many employers prefer to use a third-party service that can conduct this check on their behalf.
Good education verification background checks can reveal whether the applicant attended the schools and achieved the degrees they claim on their resume. It’s a simple way to weed out dishonest candidates who would be a liability as an employee.
This is especially important for industries like healthcare and fitness, where there are specific educational requirements to work in those fields. Applicants often make false claims on their resumes, and it’s easy for small businesses to be fooled by falsified credentials and degrees.
Education verification is an effective tool for catching these fakers, allowing the employer to see the date of attendance, degree earned, and any honors or GPA. It can also help them spot diploma mills, which are companies that offer degrees for a fee and require little or no actual education or coursework.
Education verification can be performed as part of a more extensive background check or by an HR team member by contacting the universities directly and asking for confirmation. However, it’s much easier for a third-party service to take care of this step on behalf of the business, and they can usually conduct it quickly. They may use the Student Clearinghouse or contact the university’s registrar to verify. This can save the company time and resources, mainly if they perform pre-employment background checks on all potential hires using a third-party service.
Drug screening is often included in a background check to ensure that your new employees are not under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Many industries require this test, including law enforcement agencies and those dealing with hazardous materials or where an accident could cause significant injuries or death.
In these cases, employers must ensure workers can make decisions and perform their jobs safely. Drug testing is also helpful in reducing absenteeism, improving productivity, and decreasing costs associated with worker accidents.
Education verification checks include finding information about a candidate’s educational, certification, and licensure claims. The process involves asking an individual to provide their official transcripts or contacting schools and universities on their behalf with signed consent from the candidate.
A key aspect of education verification includes identifying bogus or fraudulent schools, called diploma mills. These unaccredited schools offer degrees not recognized by any accredited college or university and can be misleading to hiring managers.
Drug tests can be administered before a conditional job offer is made or after an incident occurs as long as observable behaviors trigger reasonable suspicion. A hair specimen analysis or on-site oral fluid screen can detect up to 10 different classes of illicit substances. A urine sample can also be taken for drug screening. The model is sent to a lab for analysis, and results are returned within minutes of the collection.
It is not uncommon for job applicants to exaggerate or even lie about their education. One study found that 75% of employers have caught candidates lying about their qualifications in the hiring process. These false applications show more than a lack of integrity; they can pose serious risks for your company and harm your patients, children, or people.
Education verification is vital to every background check and can help you identify whether a candidate’s claims are accurate. It also enables you to ensure that they have the skills, knowledge, and abilities to perform the tasks of your position.
There are several different ways to conduct an education verification check. Some companies work with a third-party service that will verify your educational records and transcripts. This method is quick and easy but requires the candidate’s permission and consent.
Other companies choose to contact the institutions where the applicant studied and request their education records. This method requires the candidate’s full name and degree title. You will also need to know the university or school they attended and whether they are currently enrolled. If they received their degree abroad, you may need to do a more thorough search because it can be easier for candidates to falsify credentials from overseas universities.