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How Long Does a Background Check Take? | CNet Technologies

When you are planning to hire an employee—and want to know how long it might take to receive background check results—it only makes sense to explore the possible timeline for a background screening.

The truth is that the different levels of the background check process may require widely varying amounts of time. Depending on how many contacts must be made to provide all the required verifications, your background check could suddenly take anywhere from one to three days up to a couple of months for the most complex confirmations.

Let's break down in a bit more detail the common timeframes that you can expect when it comes to the background checks in your hiring process.

Common Types—and How Long They Tend to Take

Tired businessman with documents checking time while lying on chairs and waitingA Typical Pre-Employment Background Screening

Barring significant factors—or a need for verifications of any violations found in the person's history—these checks tend to take three days up to a week. Factors that can influence how long they take can be as simple as how quickly their past employer answers the phone to provide verification of employment.

FBI Background Checks

Due to the complexity of requesting an FBI background check—as well as the various steps involved—these checks can take more than a month to complete. They are quite thorough, but using them is often focused on individuals for whom FBI results could make or break their potential in the job. An example of this is the Identity History Summary Check.

"Instant" Background Checks

While there is such a thing as a background check that returns results in minutes or seconds, remember that this check isn't being read through the eyes of an expert; it is merely a name search through a particular set of databases, without the opportunity for third-party screening or verification. In that sense, relying on an "instant" check can be risky when it comes to implementing a thorough screening process for your hires.

Employment and Education Verification

While these checks can often come back quickly when institutions are still operational, they can also be a drawn-out part of the process. This is particularly true if a company has gone out of business or if the school in question has closed in the time since the applicant claims to have been there.

Moving through these troubling elements can be aided by working with a trusted third-party screening company. Professional screening services encounter many background check scenarios and have developed an understanding of how to confirm past payroll or student rosters even at schools that may no longer be in existence.

Businesswoman holding wall clockWhat's the Hold-Up in Hiring?

The truth is that the biggest time sink for background checks is not related to how long the databases and verifications tend to take; instead, it is due to human error. There are at least two relevant sources of error to avoid as you work on completing a background check.

Candidate Information

  • Make sure that your candidate understands how important the accuracy of the information they provide is.
  • Providing incorrect or incomplete demographic details can result in delays in the process of finding their information.
  • It can also slow down the process of confirming that all results pertain to them—and not to someone else by their same name.

Providing incorrect or incomplete information is a bad first step in the process, and it has the doubly negative effect of making you take longer before you can focus your efforts on a different candidate if this one isn't working out.

Necessary Permissions

  • Make sure that your candidate has given all the appropriate permissions to allow you to run their background check. In many cases, consent must be obtained, or information must be disclosed to the candidate so that they are aware of what information about them will now be available to their employer.
  • If they aren't adequately briefed on the situation, some candidates may see particular questions as optional when they are necessary to proceed with the process.

Working with a third-party screening company can help reduce delays and the time a background check takes in a variety of ways.

  • We have years of experience, so we know the fastest techniques for providing thorough background checks.
  • We create our permissions forms in such a way that it is hard to leave the required sections blank.
  • All disclosures are made clear to employees and potential hires.
  • Easy to use online background check requests make life easier both for your Human Resources staff and for the candidates: potential hires are more likely to complete the forms promptly and keep the process moving forward. 

Modernize Your Background Check Process With CNet Technologies!

When you need an excellent third-party screening company that can offer rapid background check results—combined with the knowledge of when more time is required to give you the complete picture—turn to CNet Technologies! Our cutting-edge CTrack platform keeps your background check process organized.

Stay on top of your background checks with the ease of technology for a hiring process that's both thorough andefficient.

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