Background Check on Education History: Why It Matters

June 18th, 2014 by Dodie

Why are background checks of prospective employees’, and even tenants’, education history important to you? There are several basic reasons why.

To emphasize:

  • A background check on an applicant can be an honesty confirmation.
  • An education background screening can protect you from making future false claims about an employee or tenant.
  • The education and training of an applicant can often predict the future on-the-job success of a person.
  •  You will be confident that all the claims of an applicant regarding education, training and certification are true.

Nowadays, it is not difficult for a person to come up with fake resumés, fake references and fake degrees. Be aware of the fact that applicants may lie on their resumés. In an effort to substantiate their lies, they will present you with fictional references and/or employers, worthless degrees and inflated educational claims. They may even give you fraudulent documents that may include pay stubs, diplomas, green cards, Social Security cards and letters of recommendation.

Ever heard of diploma mills? These diploma mills churn out fake, “life experience” degrees. In addition, it is not only spouses, relatives and friends who become co-conspirators, but there are actually web-based businesses that sell resumés, employment verification, professional references, reference letters and diplomas, all of them unreal and designed to deceive. A person can even actually buy software from the net as it would be possible to print out fraudulent documents such as W-2s, 1099s, and pay stubs.

These are exactly why it is best to consult with a professional background company. They will most likely give you tips, ideas or helpful information for the background screening of a person’s education history. A professional company would certainly help to determine any false documents a potential employee or tenant submits. For instance, one company found that 39% of all the completed background checks had at least one flag, and 10% of all education history background checks had a serious number of flags. Of these background checks flagged, the results indicated no record of the individuals or no record of them receiving degrees or certificates at all. reports that college degrees, scholastic honors and misleading majors and minors are common misrepresentations found. Consulting with a background check company for verifying one’s education history will prevent you from hiring someone quite unqualified. If you’re the person hiring for an organization, chances are there will be applicants who will list false credentials like a bachelor’s, masters or doctoral degree. It may sound believable, but might unfortunately be not from accredited institutions under a legitimate course of study.

Officials at the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Education warn that if hiring someone unqualified for a position based on false credentials could cause your organization complications because of this person’s inability to perform. If he should cause harm to anyone, your organization may be held liable. In addition, if the false degrees are eventually exposed, it will be embarrassing for you.

While most checks are basically meant to verify a potential employee’s educational attainment, this may also prove to be helpful in tenant screening. How trustworthy is he? Are his good credit reports reflective of his good education background that allows him to take decent jobs, or is there a discrepancy you should be wary about, especially if it may involve something unlawful? Would you feel safe renting out to suspicious individuals? Companies may be held liable for their employees’ wrong-doings; landlords may be held liable for their tenants’ the same way.

The cost of having an education history background check on applicants is well worth it. According to a “Right Management Survey,” the replacement cost of a bad hire is as much as three times the salary of the job. In the same vein, the cost of taking in a bad tenant may just be as risky, if not dangerous, for you, your other tenants and your business.

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