1 in 10 Applicants Fails Employment Screening Checks

Mike Stirton - 07-Jan-2016

EDINBURGH, Scotland, 7 January 2016 – Only half of pre-employment background checks pass without any issues, with one in ten applicants rejected outright, according to research by Core-Asset Verify, a leading provider of vetting and on-boarding services for Scotland’s financial sector.

Based on data from nearly 300 checks carried out in 2015, the research showed:

  • 10% of applicants failed outright with major issues
  • 34% passed, but with some minor issues
  • Only 56% of applicants passed with no concerns

The top five reasons for outright vetting failures were: 

  • Outstanding County Court Judgement or Company Voluntary Arrangement
  • Unspent criminal record for serious crime
  • False qualifications listed on CV
  • Hierarchical difference in job titles on CV
  • Dismissal or disciplinary measures in previous employment

The top five reasons for vetting passes, but with minor issues, were:

  • Adverse financial information, now addressed
  • Reference could not be obtained
  • Reference returned with doubts other than formal dismissal or disciplinary measures
  • Applicant unable to locate qualification certification and awarding body no longer holding record
  • Dates of employment inconsistent with CV but within reasonable margin of error

Commenting on the research, Mike Stirton, Director of Core-Asset Verify, said: 

“Many companies still view pre-employment background checks as a tick-boxing exercise to be completed at the end of the recruitment process. But our research shows that serious issues arising from checks are common.

“Employers who have inadequate checks in place – or worse still, no checks at all – risk hiring people who don’t have the requisite skills, qualifications or experience for the role. Most worryingly, they may be employing someone who has a history of fraudulent activity.

“In turn, the message for applicants could not be clearer: don’t lie or provide misleading information on your CV. It is much better to disclose any issues upfront than hope the truth doesn’t come out. Employers will view this much more favourably and you will have a better chance of being successful.

“Also, if you list a qualification or certificate ensure you are in possession of the documentation. In vetting a ‘lost’ certificate is the equivalent of no certificate at all.

“Companies and applicants can no longer view pre-employment background checks as merely the rubber stamping of a candidate before a contract is issued. It is now an integral and vital part of the recruitment process.”


About Core-Asset Verify

Core-Asset Verify, a division of Core-Asset Consulting, is a vetting and on-boarding service provider offering the highest levels of expertise and engagement at its heart. Unique within the Scottish financial sector, it offers a powerful combination of vetting, contract management, payroll and aftercare services.

About Core-Asset Consulting

Core-Asset Consulting is a leading independent recruitment company dedicated to the asset management, accounting & finance, investment operations and wider financial services sectors in Scotland. A specialist recruiter based in Edinburgh, it offers its clients tailored solutions for permanent and interim positions. Core-Asset Consulting is an accredited member of the Recruitment & Employment Confederation.



Richard England
Communications Director
Core-Asset Consulting
+44 (0)131 718 4600


Mike Stirton
Director – Interim, Temporary & Contract
Contact Mike
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