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3 Ways to Screen Potential Candidates Online

You started with a large pool of applicants and now you have it narrowed down to a few top candidates. So, how can you make sure you choose the right person? Start by doing individual screenings.

Screening potential candidates is an essential step in your hiring process. Not only does it help you ensure that you find someone who is qualified, but it allows you to ensure that you are hiring individuals who are who they say they are.

It’s understandable that you may be inclined to assume that the information that someone has chosen to put down on their application is truthful, but that isn’t always the case. In fact, studies have found that many people lie when applying for jobs with nearly 85% of hiring managers reporting that they have caught applicants lying on their resumes or applications. With that in mind, it’s not unlikely that it could happen to you.

If you want to protect your business by thoroughly vetting candidates, here are a few ways can screen online:

Background Check

One of the most reliable ways to screen your potential candidates using online resources is a background check. You may have heard that performing background checks is expensive but you can find affordable options like this free identity check to screen applicants.

With an identity check you can verify previous employment, address, name, and social security matches, as well as whether they show up on National Most Wanted or National Sex Offender Registry. This key information can help you ensure the safety of your other employees, customers, and viability of your business.

Perform a Simple Google Search

Performing a Google search is by no means a one-and-done solution; however, it can provide a good baseline for learning a bit about a candidate. A quick search can turn up groups they’re affiliated with, images, personal blogs, and social media accounts.

If you are looking to confirm simple facts about their previous job experience or get an idea of their personality, this is a good place to start.

Review Their Social Media Profiles

You can gather a lot of information from someone’s social media profiles, but you should tread carefully if you are going to use this step as part of your vetting process. While you can confirm facts, see if they have any recommendations or references (on LinkedIn), and identify major red flags that may clash with your company policies, you need to be careful when using the information you find on social media because it can lead to bias.

Bias in the hiring process can get you in hot water if you discriminate against someone based on certain factors like their sexual orientation or religion.

Using the Information You Find

Now that you’ve confirmed claims from their application and have a more well-rounded view of who they are, it’s time to learn more about them during a face-to-face interview if they seem to be in line with what you’re looking for. If you found something concerning or discrepancy between their application and identity check, you should give them the opportunity to clarify, it could be a simple mistake or a reasonable explanation for why information doesn’t match.

If you are going to implement one or all of these methods to conduct online screening, there are also a few things you should keep in mind when moving forward with the hiring process:

  • Before you use online resources to vet an applicant, make sure you check your state laws to make sure you’re not violating their rights.
  • You should use a consistent screening process for all applicants to help you avoid claims of bias or unfair hiring practices.
  • Do not use a single resource to make your decision, confirm your facts.
  • Follow up with candidates in a timely manner. Even if you don’t intend to bring them back for an interview it’s just good manners to let someone know where they stand if you’ve had discussions about considering them as a candidate.

Combining all the resources at your disposal (both online and in-person), you should be in a good position to find a new team member who is qualified, fits your company culture, and most importantly, a safe bet.

Atif Mallo

Atif Mallo is a freelance blogger with huge interest in technology, science, life hacks and health. He loves coffee, cheesecake and chess. Drop a line in comments to leave feedback for him.

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