How Much Does It Cost to Conduct Criminal Background Screenings?

, | January 11, 2023 | By

You understand the value of background screening, but you want a service worth your investment. When you feel like you’re being “nickel-and-dimed” by your current screening provider, it’s time to ask questions and possibly explore other options.

This blog post will cover the factors that influence the cost of a criminal background check and critical considerations for assessing the value of pre-employment screening services.

Assessing the Cost of Criminal Background Screening

When you ask about background check costs, you signal that you care about getting value for every dollar you spend. And you’re not alone. In the most recent employer survey conducted by the Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA), cost was one of the top criteria considered by employers when selecting a screening provider.

When you operate a staffing firm, you need to be even more careful when investing in employment screening because of the high volume of background checks you need to complete for your clients. To be sure you’re getting value for what you pay and aren’t being overcharged, take the following actions:

Don’t look for the lowest-cost provider.

When selecting a background check provider, the cheapest option may not always be the best, especially if it means you run the risk of getting an inaccurate background check report. Some background check companies may charge a super-low price but then take shortcuts by, for example, only checking criminal history databases and not verifying with the county courts. 

Or when searching an applicant’s criminal history, they may check only one name or address for the person, not their address and name history. As a result, background check results could be missing criminal changes an applicant incurred under an alias or while living in another county or state.

Understand what’s included in each background check.

In addition to knowing the dollar amounts associated with each background check, you also need to know what’s included in those amounts. Because a criminal background screening can be complex and composed of several elements, you need to know exactly which services your screening provider is conducting in exchange for the price. This knowledge is critical because some providers may hide extra fees in bundle deals, tricking you into thinking you’re getting a real deal when you’re not.

Recognize the variability of court fees.

State and county courts across the US vary in the fees they charge to access their court files. Therefore, the cost of every criminal background check will be influenced by these fees, which can increase slightly over time. Though it’s not necessary to know which courts have $5 access fees and which have $15 fees, it’s important to recognize that these fees are a component of every quality background check.

Take advantage of volume discounts.

When you operate a staffing firm that conducts numerous criminal background checks for clients, you likely undergo hundreds of background screenings each year. You can better manage the cost of these activities by checking to see if your firm is eligible for a volume discount. A volume discount adds more predictability to your screening costs and can significantly reduce the cost per background check.

How BIB Pricing Works for You

At BIB, we understand how important it is for staffing firms and employers to manage the costs of background checks. That’s why we’ve set our pricing policies to help you understand and manage costs, making it easier to see the value you’re getting for your investment.

We offer the following:

Transparent Pricing

Pricing is clearly explained on our website. There’s no fine print, and we distinguish what’s included (and what’s not) for each pricing level.

No Hidden Fees

We don’t overcharge our customers by adding vague or unnecessary surcharges. We publish a list of surcharges and other fees charged by county and state courts, international sources, and state motor vehicle departments.

Volume Discounts

BIB clients who process more than 75 background checks per year are eligible for volume discounts. We also offer discount pricing to K-12 schools, members of the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA), and other non-profits.

Get the Best Value for Background Screening

Comprehensive background screening is about value and truth. You want your investment to deliver accurate background checks so you can help your clients meet their hiring goals.

By asking the right questions and working with a screening provider that communicates honestly and offers transparent pricing, you don’t have to worry about being overcharged or paying for subpar screening services. For more insights, read our guide, The Staffing Pro’s Complete Guide to Better Background Screening Results.