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Background Check Policy

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The University requires new hire faculty and staff employees in regular positions to undergo a background check. The background check shall be completed after a contingent offer of employment has been conveyed and accepted by the applicant and include the following: criminal history, employment verification, academic credential verification and social security number verification.

As described below, the background check also may include credit history, motor vehicle records, professional license and certification verification, or other job-related information. A background check must be completed and a satisfactory report received before a new hire may start work. If a satisfactory report has not yet been received, the Chief Human Resource Officer (or designee) may approve in writing the applicant’s employment and commencement of work.

Authorization

Any applicant who receives a contingent job offer and accepts the offer for a regular position must complete and sign a background check form to authorize the University to conduct a background check. An applicant who refuses to sign a profile and authorize a background check will be eliminated from further consideration for employment.

The University contracts with an outside agency to conduct criminal background investigations, employment, Social Security Number verification, and credit checks as allowed by applicable law. Academic verification is conducted by the University directly and may include requiring an applicant to provide original transcripts supporting degrees and/or certifications obtained.

Motor Vehicle Record Check

The University contracts with an outside agency to conduct motor vehicle record checks and evaluates driving records. Any applicant for a position that requires the operation of a motor vehicle will be ineligible for the position if his/her motor vehicle record shows driving related convictions or excessive moving violations.

Credit History Check

A satisfactory credit history may only be required when it is a bona fide occupational requirement of the position and as allowed by law. The job must include one or more of the following:

• Management responsibility for setting the direction or control of the department;

• Access to sensitive information that a student or employee authorizes the University to obtain, process, and keep to which only managers and a select few employees have access;

• Access to financial information that is non-public and relates to the overall financial direction of the University, confidential information that is stored in secure repositories not accessible to the public or low-level employees, or national security information;

• Custody of or unsupervised access to cash or marketable assets, which means University property that is specially safeguarded from the public and to which access is only entrusted to managers and select other employees (does not include fixtures, furnishings, or equipment of the University); or

• Signatory power over business assets over $100 or more per transaction.

Use of Background Check Report Information

Upon completion of the background check, the agency conducting the investigation will provide Human Resources staff with a complete report. To ensure confidentiality of applicant information, Human Resources staff will receive the report and confirm whether the applicant is eligible for employment in the position. Data and information collected as part of the background check report shall be used for the purpose of evaluating the applicant for employment unless otherwise permitted or required by law. HR shall maintain data collected as part of this process in separate confidential files. Any employee who is responsible for an unauthorized disclosure of information collected under this policy shall be subject to corrective action up to and including termination of employment.

Human Resources staff and/or hiring manager shall gather, evaluate, and maintain any job-related background check information and verifications not included in the background check conducted by the agency such as reference checks or professional certifications.

Having a pending criminal charge or a criminal conviction does not preclude employment. The Chief Human Resources Officer (or designee) evaluates the relevance of the criminal history of the individual being hired to the position being filled. The nature of the offense, the circumstances surrounding it, the proximity in time of the conviction, and its relevance to a particular job will be considered on a case-by-case basis. The only data and information that the hiring manager will receive concerning an applicant’s criminal history is whether the investigation on the applicant yielded satisfactory or unsatisfactory results.

Information obtained in a background check will be compared with information provided by the applicant. An applicant who provides false, incomplete, or misleading information on a profile, resume, or in an interview will be immediately eliminated from further consideration for employment. An employee who provides false, incomplete, or misleading information during the application or interview process may be subject to corrective action up to and including termination of employment. (Refer to U208 Termination of Employment.)

Applicant Rights and Obligations

Any misrepresentation, omission, or falsification of information related to the application process or materials may result in corrective action up to and including termination of employment or removal from further consideration.

Applicants for employment must disclose criminal convictions (excluding convictions that have been sealed or expunged) on the employment application or profile. Each applicant will be evaluated based on the nature of the crime, when it occurred, and the duties and responsibilities of the position for which the applicant is being considered.

If the University intends to take an adverse employment action because of information in the background check report received from the agency, the University will provide the applicant with a pre-adverse action letter or notice that an adverse action may be taken based at least in part on information provided in the background check report, a copy of the information on which the adverse action will be based, and other information as required by law.

An applicant denied employment based on unsatisfactory results of the background check report, who believes his or her background information is incorrect as reported by the agency, may contact the agency or other entities to provide correct information. The applicant is ineligible for hire to the position unless the official records confirm the correction to the information.

If the University decides to take an adverse employment because of information in the background check report received from the agency, the University will provide the applicant with an adverse action letter informing the applicant of his/her rights as required by law.

Employees represented by a bargaining unit may be governed by the appropriate bargaining unit agreement.

Rev 9/2016