The UK's employee vetting body the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) is failing employers by supplying information about candidates that is sometimes inaccurate or out of date.
At a time when employers are more reliant than ever on staff being trustworthy, research by Personnel Today's sister title IRS Employment Review has found that a third of employers have received plainly wrong CRB disclosures.
The main type of reported inaccuracy concerns the CRB sending information about a member of the applicant's family or a different person with a similar name. Other inaccuracies include incorrect conviction details and factual mistakes such as misspelling an individual's name or address.
The CRB claims that more than 90% of standard disclosures are completed within two weeks. However, this does not tally with the research findings, in which more than half of respondents said it takes two to four weeks to receive information, and a fifth said it takes up to six weeks.
A Home Office spokeswoman said the IRS figures needed to be put in context as they relate to the percentage of customers who "may have received one inaccurate disclosure".