How Many Days Does an Employee Background Check Take?

Recruiters review new employees thoroughly. It’s not just about checking their education or work experience credentials but also things like criminal records.

In background checks, the recruiter and hiring team go through a stringent process. Consulting local police stations to cross-check with previous employers is an important aspect while recruiting.

Generally, a typical check takes two to four business days barring any unforeseen circumstances or complications. But this process can range from one week to one month as it varies from one employer to another.

This article provides insight into your persistent question: “how long should I wait for my background check?”

What Does a Background Check Include?

A background check verifies the accuracy of information provided on a candidate’s resume. The recruiter gathers information on the candidate during the recruiting process.

Education, professional career history, criminal records, motor vehicle or license record checks, and credit history are some of these criteria. These criteria are, in greater depth, as follows:

  1. Identity verification: Many factors vary when it comes to background checking time. Some employers might finish it off with your passport or driver’s license details while others may do a thorough investigation. You can also get a fake id online for safer access.
  2. Employment verification: This might take two to four days or more. This takes time as the recruiter requires to be in touch with all the past employers or their HR personnel.
  3. Academic verification: Matches your educational background data from relevant schools and universities. It can be an arduous task and might take several days.
  4. Criminal checks: The timeframe for this check may vary. If a candidate has been to one state, or one home country, then the check can take one to two business days. But if the candidate has emigrated or worked in different countries, this process can stretch long.
  5. Credit checks: This background check involves overviewing of a candidate’s credit history.

Possibilities of Background Check Delay

Delays in the background screening process can be foreseeable. Here are steps you can take to prevent delays:

  • Provide accurate information.
  • Multiple residences of the candidate
  • Lack of a paper trail
  • International experience if any
  • Multiple ongoing checks as the employer wish to have a few checks before making an offer.


A background check usually takes two to three days to complete. However, because the length varies so much from candidate to candidate, it’s impossible to give an exact time range.

For instance, different types of resumes result in varying lengths of time for background checks. Some communication gaps or a lack of appropriate information might also cause the average duration to exceed three days.

A well-coordinated human resource staff can reduce the hiring process’ typical turnaround time. 


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