Criminal background check application form with glasses and ballpoint penFor a lot of companies, finding employees who will prove to be reliable, skilled, and a good fit to both their job and the existing office culture is often a challenge. Now, add in the need to make sure that the applicant is not some wolf in sheep’s clothing, with a criminal past that might come back to haunt everyone, and the hiring process becomes an even bigger task.

The key to hiring the right applicant is due diligence, and that includes an SA police check you can do online.

What’s a police check?

Basically, it’s research done on a specific person to find out if they have a criminal history. It provides details of court outcomes that are allowed to be made public, not only in South Australia but across the whole continent. It also shows if there are pending charges.

Contrary to popular belief, it’s not just police stations that can do background checks of individuals, but also private organisations that are accredited by the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission.

Companies who are hiring can include a police check as a requirement for applicants.

How does it work?

There are actually two ways to apply for a police check. One is by coming to a police station or any participating post office with a filled out application form and your ID. You can either download the forms from the internet or get them from the station. You will need to pay a corresponding fee. This process applies for all Australian states except Queensland.

The second is by doing it online, where you need to fill out an application form and enter your ID for verification. There is also an application fee that you can pay online. You can then choose if you want to receive your police check certificate through email or as a hard copy via snail mail. An email or text message will inform you when the certificate is ready.

Sometimes, the application will be flagged for manual processing, which means further investigation is needed because someone with a criminal history has the same name or date of birth as you.

Why is it important?

A clear police record is usually a good gauge of an applicant’s behaviour and tendencies. This is particularly vital in industries that cater to children and old people, who are quite vulnerable and therefore need the most reliable and level-headed personnel to take care of them. This also applies to law enforcement, education and several branches of health care.

Companies who require police checks for applicants should not be seen as paranoid or distrustful. They are in fact being professional and ensuring the safety of the organisation and its employees.

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