The Pre-Employment Screening Process

1process7stepsEmployers and their viability often depend on the quality and reliability of their employees. Employers often spend a significant amount of money hiring and interviewing potential employees in trying to accept job applicants who are best suited to do certain jobs.

Employers also use pre-employment screening of potential employees to limit potential legal liability. Although there are several ways in which the law can hold employers liable for their employees’ actions, the tort of negligent hiring and the doctrine of vicarious liability are the most significant.

Having pre-employment screening process that is effective for hiring new agency staff might be the most critical and important step in hiring and retaining high quality employees and minimizing potential liability exposure and workplace violations and wrongdoings like:

  • Discrimination
  • Negligent Hiring
  • Employee Accidents and Injuries
  • Vehicle Accidents
  • Workplace Theft
  • Workplace Violence
  • General Liability Claims

By proactively implementing and adopting a pre-employment screening process, a lot of these risks need avoiding or reduced by having specific policies and ways in place which are consistently applied throughout all departments within the firm.


Agencies need to consider all available methods of pre-employment screening and decide which are prudent and possible for the certain jobs available and being sought which includes volunteers and contract workers. Written job descriptions need to exist for paid jobs. Every job description needs to name those essential functions of the job. Essential functions are the basic duties that an employee, with or without reasonable accommodation, needs to do. Employers should carefully look at every job to decide which task or functions are important and essential to performance, which is very important before taking an action in employment like advertising, recruiting, hiring, firing and promoting.

A comprehensive and essential pre-employment screening process should merge and consider the following factors:

  1. Employment Application Form
  2. Job Descriptions
  3. Pre-Employment Physical Examination
  4. Background Checks and References
  5. Driver Abstract Check
  6. Skills Testing
  7. Employment Interview Questions
  8. Criminal Convictions Background Checks

It is important to make final decisions in employment contingent upon the whole pre-employment screening process for jobs and its completion. The job applicants need to know about this at the start of the pre-employment screening process and documented in the pre-employment screening policies. If pre-employment screening contingencies have several connections to potential employees, it needs noting in written form in the interview file or on the employment application. The potential employee should unequivocally understand that all the offers of employment are contingent upon the successful completion of all the background checks of the employee.

The establishments of specific written pre-employment screening steps for every company job and the training for hiring will help to make sure those pre-employment screening practices are consistent, effective and fair.

For more information about pre-employment screening, feel free to visit or contact us at (800) 409 -1819




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