A Guide to Australian Standards for employment screening

A Guide to Australian Standards for employment screening

Employment screening processes is beyond the standard interview process done by the recruitment companies. Employment screening needs extensive resources and systems that are designed to uncover the information that a company requires to make an informed decision about the suitability of a candidate during the hiring process.

The more information obtained and evaluated, the greater the chance of reaching the correct decision to employ a particular candidate for a role.

Now-a-days hiring risks are magnified. Most of the HR professionals acknowledge the need for rigorous screening process. Following few practices and standards, HR professionals can always minimize the risk of hiring dishonest applicants.

NSW Independent Commission against Corruption (ICAC) report reinforces the need for a robust risk-based employment screening framework as typically between 20% to 30% of job applications contain some form of false information. Nothing in the report suggests ICAC’s statistics relate solely to NSW or to the public service. They even think there are better screening practices available.


The Australian Standard for Employment Screening was created in 2006 as a guide for recruiters on how to approach this important area of risk. Recruiters should consider reviewing their employee screening framework to accommodate complimentary practices that have emerged during the past decade.

The Most reviewed Australian Standards for Employment Screening are:

    1. Identity – Sight some form of photo identification. If a photo is provided, a photo identification should be done and re-checked before going further in the screening process
    2. Identity – Verify address history. Point 1 and 2 are mandatory before taking a hiring decision as per Australian standards. Verifying a driver’s license meets these two elements.
    3. Integrity – CV should be checked.  CV of the candidate should be checked thoroughly to understand about the candidate and his past work experience.
    4. Integrity – Referees should be checked. To establish a history of strong moral principles, honesty and decency.
    5. Integrity – Police check should be conducted.  Point 3, 4, 5 aren’t mandatory as per Australian standards to make a hiring decision and to confirm whether candidate has any previous criminal history.
    6. Credentials – Verify qualifications and professional memberships
    7. Credentials – Professional Referee should be sought to verify positions and dates of employmentPoint 6 and 7 are recommended but not mandatory before taking a hiring decision.

As an Employer, let’s say you verified a candidate’s driver’s license, qualifications, and professional memberships. Congratulations, you have essentially met the Australian Standards for employment screening.

Is this enough? you know that you cannot really determine whether your candidate is suitable or unsuitable given this minimum amount of information. It will help immensely to have a more thorough screening process.

Australian Standards, even though a good starting point, are more than a decade old, out-of-date and in need of review. This has happened. They will change in 2021.

AS 4811 2021 will include a IS 31000 -type risk assessment.

Preemployment screening practices are about to change. Are you ready?

Risk Identification – include the dimensions of a person’s background that the PSPF use and that 440,000 people has been screened against in Australia.

Risk Analysis – use the secret sauce: the fair, non-discriminatory PSPF Adjudicative guidelines.

Risk Evaluation – an easy to understand Green (favourable), Amber (Caution) , Red (Adverse) result gives you actionable intelligence.

You can start immediately by selecting one of our 4 different Suitability Assessments – you can get your first assessment (valued at $169) free.

Talk to www.cleard.life about a pre-employment screening ‘overlay’ and how we can help you make the right governance, risk and compliance decisions.

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