HR Managers Get What They Pay for with Free Background Check Services

June 28, 2021

Interviewing for a job Free Background Checks Cause More Harm Than Good When Hiring Workers

Many human resource managers are challenged to properly screen and vet workforces with a limited budget. Charities, not-for-profits, and other public entities are likely already stretched thin when it comes to available funds for conducting proper vetting and screening procedures. In some circumstances, even large corporations in the tech, logistics, and rideshare industries may also be in the same situation. It could be tempting to screen a workforce with a free background check service, but the results could offer more harm than good concerning key hiring decisions.

For any manager looking to complete proper due diligence when hiring new employees, consider these reasons to opt for a paid background check provider. Gain a full picture of your workforce and create a culture of honesty and integrity with complete background checks that go far beyond readily available public records. Instead, dig deep into criminal histories that might make you think twice about hiring a potential candidate for your charity or nonprofit organization.

Free Background Checks May Only Offer Information That Was Already Available Online

A quick search online reveals multiple services that claim to offer free background checks in just a matter of seconds. These free background check services also suggest that any HR manager can conduct a proper background check by simply entering someone's name without any other information. The problem remains that the legalities of conducting such searches require the individual’s consent and can’t be done without their knowledge. Should an HR manager opt for a free service, they could face legal challenges for not conducting their own due diligence in compliance with local laws.

Legitimate background check service providers ensure they remain compliant with any and all privacy laws for where the background check is being conducted. Laws and proper procedures on background checks could vary between different states, provinces, or jurisdictions, complicating the process. HR managers or security directors that choose to opt for free background check services could face compliance issues after a candidate is hired, or worse, miss out on vital information that could influence a hiring decision.

Computer in an office Free Background Checks Follow Limited Standards and Best Practices

Background services that charge for their services are likely to follow the standards set out by the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS). NAPBS Accreditation sets the golden standard for background check service providers in North America.

Many free background check providers do not have NAPBS Accreditation, presenting endless problems for HR managers looking to gain a full and clear picture of their workforce. Further, free background service companies do not maintain working relationships with the proper authorities to conduct a complete search. In some circumstances, free background check services will only offer information that is already publicly available. Should an HR manager use these free services, they could miss important criminal histories or receive inaccurate information.

Free Background Checks Only Provides the Tip of the Iceberg

It’s also important to consider that free background services offer zero customer service and have no experience in uncovering information that has been intentionally hidden. In some instances, a potential candidate might have made great efforts to hide information that could influence a hiring manager’s decision. Further, only paid searches can reveal information about an employee’s past that has long been buried in legal records in a courthouse.

Paid background check service providers will work alongside an HR manager or security director to ensure that their workforces are screened properly, offer comprehensive and detailed results while remaining compliant with any local laws. Bad actors could infiltrate your organization in an effort to gain access to vulnerable sectors that you serve, including the less fortunate, children, or the elderly.

Human Resources Alternatives to Free Background Checks with Screening Services Offered by

Ultimately, a free background check puts your business at risk for non-compliance and improper due diligence. A charity could be held liable for not performing proper due diligence and harming the sector you serve. While budgets for proper background screening services might be limited, there are solutions for any business hiring a new workforce, big or small.

Powered by ISB Global Services, allows candidates to order their own criminal background checks, allowing nonprofits to complete their due diligence while saving money. Now, you can request that an applicant provides their background screening credentials as a condition to accepting a position.

Explore various service offerings and ensure that your nonprofit protects those you serve and maintain its reputation. Contact us directly or visit to learn more.