6.22—University Background Checks

Policy Statement

Michigan Technological University is committed to providing a safe environment for its students, faculty, and staff in support of its educational mission. This Policy is intended to help the University achieve that goal by establishing a process for conducting background checks and verifications consistently and fairly.


Policy Requirements

This Policy applies to all non-student University positions for which an offer of employment or appointment is made on or after August 1, 2015.

All job postings will include background check requirements for the position. Candidates for employment who fail to participate fully or provide inaccurate information will be eliminated from consideration for the position.  All offers to the selected candidate for all posted positions, as well as promotions outside of the current department or department transfers within the University, will be contingent upon the results of the background check.  Human Resources will lead the process of reviewing any adverse information revealed from the background check.  

Employment of short-term, casual, seasonal employees who are new hires or re-hired more than 9 months after their most recent last date of employment will also be contingent upon the results of a background check.

Reason for the Policy

This Policy supports the University’s efforts to minimize institutional risk, employ best practices when hiring, and assist hiring authorities in making sound hiring decisions by creating a standardized process applicable to the entire campus.  

It also supports goal one of the University’s Strategic Plan.  

Related Policy Information

All individuals applying for a position at the University are required to disclose criminal conviction information. Criminal conviction information will not be used to discriminate against applicants.  The existence of a criminal conviction will not automatically disqualify an individual from employment or employment consideration.  The University will consider, at a minimum, the nature and the seriousness of the offense, the nature of the position, and the length of time since the conviction.  Any use of the background check information will be compliant with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Federal Trade Commission requirements.

The University recognizes the need to protect an individual’s right to privacy.  As such, all background check records will be kept in secured, access-restricted personnel files accessible to only University employees having a legitimate employment-related need for access.

Exclusions

  • Student employees unless the employment duties support a background check.  
  • Short-term, casual, seasonal employees being re-hired less than 9 months from the end of their most recent employment.

Contacts

Human Resources

487-2280

Definitions

Background Check – Refers to an examination of a person’s history that may include, but is not limited to, the following:

  1. Verification of Social Security Number
  2. Examination of county criminal records (county of current residence)
  3. Examination of state criminal records (recent residences)
  4. Examination of federal criminal records
  5. Examination of sex offender registry (nationwide)
  6. Examination of employment history
  7. Degree verification
  8. Other criteria as applicable to the position (i.e. drug screening, motor vehicle record check, etc.)

Criminal Conviction – Being found guilty, entering a guilty plea or pleading no contest to a felony and/or misdemeanor other than a minor traffic violation.

Degree Verification – Confirmation of the selected candidate’s educational credentials as listed on the application materials.

Final Applicant – A current, former, or prospective employee recommended for hire, transfer or promotion and to whom a contingent offer of employment will be made.

Promotion – Job advancement of Michigan Tech employees which involves increased and/or different job duties and responsibilities.   For the purpose of this Policy, a promotion does not include appointments or promotions built into a current position’s normal progress to the next level (e.g., academic progression from assistant professor to associate professor or staff progression from assistant to a higher level).  Background checks are not required in such cases unless the progression involves a change in duties or other factors exist justifying the need for a background check.

Re-Check – The act of verifying information on a current employee who has already undergone a background check.  The university will re-check motor vehicle/driving records annually for those positions in which driving is a job requirement.  Also, the criminal portion of the background check may be rechecked annually by departmental request if the job functions in a high-risk/vulnerable population area.

Transfer – Refers to a lateral movement with the same or similar job responsibilities. A transfer typically involves moving to a position in a different campus department and/or with a different hiring authority. Background Checks are not required in such cases unless the transfer involves a change in duties or other factors exist justifying the need for a background check.

Responsibilities

Director, Human Resources – Ensure policy compliance and establish procedures.

Candidates/Applicants

  • Disclose accurate personal and criminal conviction information when applying for a position.  
  • Consent to background check at the time of application.  
  • Provide information in a timely manner to third party vendor after accepting the verbal/contingent job offer.

Human Resources

  • Work with hiring manager to identify appropriate background check components based upon the position’s responsibilities and interactions.
  • Ensure appropriate background check language is incorporated in job postings.
  • Submit background check request to third-party vendor who will perform the checks.
  • Upon receipt of report, update the hiring manager on the status of the background check.
  • Secure background check information in secure, access-restricted files.
  • Lead the process of reviewing any adverse information revealed in the background check.

Hiring Manager/Hiring Department

  • Follow a rigorous hiring process which identifies the best qualified candidate.
  • Conduct Reference Checks on candidate recommended for hire.
  • Ensure that all offers of employment are made contingent upon the results of the background checks.

Procedures

In support of this policy, the following procedures are included:

Procedure:   2.6022.1 Background Check Procedure

Forms

In support of this policy, the following forms/instructions are included:

Form:  

Consumer Disclosure and Authorization Form (provided online by third party vendor)


Adoption Date

08/21/2015 Approved by Vice President for Administration.

Revisions

04/10/2017 Transfer of policy page from HTML to CMS. Business and Finance numbers renamed from "2.6000" to "6. Human Resources". Specifically from "2.6022—University Background Checks" to "6.22—University Background Checks".