● ● ● Staying In Touch
Issue 45 September 2006
The Importance of Obtaining Reference Checks/Background Checks
This HR Connect is designed to provide you with best practices and
some Archdiocesan resources on the topic of reference checks for
employees and volunteers. Parishes, Schools and Archdiocesan
agencies often invest a lot of time and money in hiring and training
new employees. As a result, they should want to find out as much as
possible about the applicant before committing to hiring. By not
conducting good reference checks, employers may fail to uncover
information that would have proved a new employee unsuitable for
the job, and may expose themselves to claims of negligent hiring, or at
the very least, make an expensive hiring mistake. The point is this: “It
always pays to carefully check references of potential employees.”
• References can help you confirm factual information that candidates provide.
• References can sometimes reveal more in-depth information about a candidate, such as quality of
performance, strengths and weaknesses or perhaps criminal convictions.
• References checks with former employers and the Office of Human Resources may identify
individuals who are not desirable to hire.
Hiring a new employee or adding a new volunteer requires several steps. Some of those steps are required
by law, Archdiocesan Policy, both, or not required by law or policy, but are highly recommended to reduce
the risk of making a bad hiring decision and having to deal with the consequences. In addition to reference
checks, State laws and/or Archdiocesan policies may require the individual to be fingerprinted or
background checked with government agencies for certain positions.
The Archdiocesan Employment Application includes the following important wording:
“My permission is given for contact to be made with references and employers listed herein, except wher