You likely spend forty or more hours a week at the office.  In many ways, it is your home away from home.  And because work can easily provide its own stresses, you want to make sure that your employees are not adding to that stress.  Keeping your office environment friendly and cooperative starts with hiring the right people.  The interview process is a great place to begin screening applicants to find out not only if they are qualified for the position but if they would be compatible with your office dynamic.

But screening for compatibility can be harder than just screening for criminal activity.  Often it takes more investigative time and deeper, probing questions to find out if a potential employee is right for your office.

A reputable background screening service can help you uncover possible red flags that your potential hire is an office upset.

1.       Unreachable, unresponsive or non-existent references. 

If your background check cannot contact the listed reference or finds these references reluctant to talk, this might be a sign that your potential employee did not cultivate good relationships at their previous job.  This may be a tell that your potential new-hire does not create long-term professional relationships at work, or worse, does not inspire their coworkers to advocate for them.

Missing references can be a sign that this employee has something to hide.

2.       Leaving previous jobs under tense circumstances

If an interviewee spends a bulk of time outlining how previous jobs treated them unfairly, or gossiping over past work incidents or people, watch out.  This may be a sign of someone who creates inappropriate drama in the office.  Listen to see if this person can use discretion when describing uncomfortable work conditions, or whether they seem to revel in these issues.

A background screening check can uncover the truth behind the matter.  By interviewing past employees about incidents discussed in the interview, you can find out a more unbiased view.  Also, looking into the reputation of a previous place of employment may shed light on whether your employee was in a bad situation or was responsible for creating it.

3.       Frequent job hopping

If your employee has had many jobs in a short amount of time, this may be indicative of someone who does not create long-term relationships, someone uninterested in working through problems, or someone simply not committed to the workplace.

It could also be indicative of a changing economy.  A background screening service will be able to help you in the hiring process to discover whether your potential employee left for the right reasons.

Do you have a new-hire horror story?  Share your tale with us in the comments below!