We live in an age where almost anyone can create an exaggerated online persona. It can be hard to read someone on first meeting, especially if they have an internet presence that makes them seem friendly, responsible and mature. This can be daunting in interviews, when all you have to go on is what appears on a Facebook or LinkedIn profile. While plenty of companies are taking on the practice of researching social media sites in order to hire the best candidates, it can be a very limiting process.

How can you, as an employer, find the best information about prospective employees to your company? The answer is simple: the age-old practice of background checks and running credit reports.

It may seem simple, but you would be surprised how helpful this information can be when considering employees for your company. Not only will a background check help you see any possible red flags that have come up in an applicant’s past, but it can also verify their status as a citizen. Many companies have grown wary of hiring undocumented individuals by accident, and a background check is the best way to avoid this. A background check can assure you to hire a competent, legal and safe individual.

Utilizing the services of a background check company can also help guarantee that you are meeting all of the regulations for hiring on federal and state levels. Issues of discrimination and eligibility can be a nightmare for Human Resources, and the best way to cut through all of the red tape and find the right person for the job, while still appeasing the regulations imposed, is through a background check.

Another large problem that companies find during the hiring process is longevity. How can you be sure that the person you’re hiring is not just going to take off and leave when another opportunity comes along? A background check can help an employer see the employment history of an individual, and to make an educated guess on how and why they spent the amount of time they did at previous jobs. Someone with several jobs each year may not be the right fit, while someone coming from a long-standing position may be the perfect match.

Similarly, a credit report check will help you to better understand the background of your potential hire. In recent years, checking the credit of a possible employee have become the norm for almost all businesses. Reports from the Society of Human Resource Management have stated that more than half of businesses in America check the credit of applicants before making a hiring decision. This illustrates how important a good credit history is for most businesses, and you will benefit greatly from employing the same practice when reviewing new applicants.

Credit checks can help understand what a resume does not show. It can show previous addresses of a potential hire, which can help understand how grounded they are. Someone who moves a lot in a small amount of time might not take a job seriously, and you might be wasting your time in considering them for a position when others are more stable and qualified.

Hiring a background check company is in the best interest of all businesses, big or small. A solid background check company can help you to avoid potentially disastrous mistakes and show you how to find the right person for the job. There’s no such thing as being too cautious in the current marketplace and it is always best to make sure all bases are covered before moving forward with a new hire.