A growing number of companies have opted to outsource much of their Human Resources (HR) functions. In many cases, the responsibility of running background checks on new applicants relies on staffing agencies to complete and manage the process. 

There are several reasons a company might choose to have its staffing agencies run background checks on potential employees. Most obviously, staffing agencies are well-rehearsed in the screening process, leading to an efficient process that organizations’ internal teams don’t have to bear. Additionally, with the scale of screenings, a staffing agency conducts, they often are able to get better pricing on packages. 

What Do Staffing Companies Do?

The responsibility of a staffing company varies from the organization but typically includes:

  1. Recruiting and sourcing candidates: they are responsible for filling positions with the best candidates that are qualified and meet the skills required by the company. This is typically done through job postings, social media, and networking.
  2. Interviewing and selecting candidates: The agency typically conducts initial interviews to ensure suitability for the position.
  3. Screening and assessing candidates: the pre-qualification work of a staffing company is where much of the value is sourced for organizations. From running background checks to verifying the necessary skills, the staffing agency’s responsibility is to match the right candidate with the right position.
  4. Hiring and onboarding: Some staffing companies take hiring a step further and assist with the actual onboarding of the selected candidate. This typically includes working with the organization’s internal staff to create a checklist and smooth onboarding system.

Do I Need to Screen Temporary Employees?

The simple answer is yes, it is advisable to conduct a background check on temporary employees, just as you would for full-time employees. 

While temporary employees may not be with your company for an extended period, they will still have access to your company’s resources and information, and their actions could significantly impact your business. Background checks can help to uncover any past criminal history, verify employment and education credentials, and ensure that the temporary employee is a good fit for the role they are being hired to perform. Additionally, conducting background checks on all employees, whether they are temporary or full-time, can help ensure that your company complies with legal and regulatory requirements related to employment screening.

Final Thoughts

Whether your background screening and hiring process is internal or outsourced, it’s ultimately the employers’ responsibility to ensure the pre-hire process mitigates the risks your particular company requires. This means understanding what is included in your staffing agency’s background check and ensuring it meets your needs. We suggest working with your staffing agency and/or background screening company to build a background check report that meets your company’s unique needs. 

Information provided here is for educational and informational purposes only and should not constitute as legal advice. We recommend you contact your own legal counsel for any questions regarding your specific practices and compliance with applicable laws.