The Importance of Contractor Background Check

Contractor background check?  Is this even necessary when hiring a contractor for your business? 

Using a contractor is a great way to use another person’s skills and experiences when need be. However, when choosing a professional contractor, it is important to ensure that they can carry out the work effectively and safely.

This means that they should have professional licensing because licensed contractors have been vetted thoroughly to reduce potential risk and liabilities. A quality background contractor check provider should offer a platform which is designed for organizations that use contractors and vendors that must be cleared for work.

When hiring a contractor, it is important to ensure that they are who they say they are. Performing background checks on your contractors are important to you as an employer as you will get to look at their academic background, criminal and professional records, as well as past contracts.

Although contractor vetting is important, it is not simple.

There have been recent cases of individuals conducting home repair services, in Florida without proper licenses. Check requirements have also been raised in Washington D.C, which led to astonishing vetting backlog.  This has led the police to shut down the unlicensed contractors and educate the public about the importance of contractor licensing.

Unlicensed contractors indicate that they are not vetted and many states have made it mandatory to have background check reports before issuing a contractor’s license.

Laws to consider when running a contractor background checks

There are laws to consider when running contractor background checks. Background check laws of the Federal and the state as well as your organization’s internal policies, especially if it is highly-regulated, are the major laws to consider. The federal and state provide equal employment opportunities which should be followed.

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), is responsible for regulating the use of background checks in the US. Among its valid reasons for obtaining a contractor report on an individual is the “employment purpose”. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), interprets the FCRA and ensures that it is followed.

What to consider when conducting a contractor background check

Most companies in the United States are running background checks on their employees. People say that looking at the past can predict the future. There must be a permissible purpose for the background check and the contractor must consent to the background check. In order to run a background check on your contractors, there are various factors to consider. The most common include:

Criminal checks

You can check for a criminal background on your contractors when conducting a contractor background check. This includes offense history, sentences and the like. This information is required for contractors who have access to a federal information system or works for the Department of Homeland Security or department of justice.

Federal Acquisition Regulation

The Federal Acquisition Regulation describes several contractor qualifications and the actions that a contracting officer may take when awarding a contract.

You may also need to check if the contractor is in the Terrorism Watchlist, check their sex offender history and SSN validation.

In conclusion, there is an increasing need to balance labor requirements and security clearance in contract-based work. It is important to find a contractor background check provider who will help your business get a trustworthy third-party service provider.

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