Breaking Down Starbucks Background Checks for Job Applicants

Does Starbucks do background checks? With a huge number of locations, it’s a question prospective job-seekers ask all the time. Across the United States, the company employs hundreds of thousands of people. If you plan to seek a job with the chain, understanding Starbucks background checks is an integral part of that process. Use this overview of the facts to prepare as you move towards applying with the company.

Do You Have to Have a Background Check to Work at Starbucks?

Yes, Starbucks does conduct background checks on potential employees. Those who apply to be a barista or work in management must undergo a screening process. Individuals applying to work in a corporate or office-related position within Starbucks should also expect a background check. However, Starbucks does not initiate these checks until after making a conditional offer of employment.

Applicants can expect to go through an application and job interview process first. If a hiring manager decides to move forward, they’ll provide the conditional offer. Accepting a conditional offer means that the background process will come next. Per the Fair Credit Reporting Act, you must provide signed consent to allow the company to order a background check on you. The results of the check will play a big part in determining whether the conditional offer becomes a final offer.

Does Starbucks Make Background Check Exceptions?

No. Everyone who applies to Starbucks and receives a conditional job offer must complete a background check. Going through vetting is a requirement of the process. However, the company has taken several steps to provide all applicants with a more level playing field. Notably, Starbucks has “banned the box” on its job applications. There are no questions about criminal history when you apply to the company. All such inquiries wait until after the conditional job offer.

So, what does that mean in practice? Does Starbucks hire felons or people with a lesser criminal record?

Yes, per company policy, Starbucks does sometimes hire felons. According to the corporate policy statement, the company “review[s] each felon/felony on a case by case basis.” The company encourages all candidates to apply regardless of criminal history. Every applicant receives an individualized assessment of their history. Hiring managers may consider several factors when evaluating old convictions. This includes how long ago it occurred alongside the nature or severity of the crime. Whether the conviction is relevant to the job in question is important, too.

What Does Starbucks Search For During Background Checking?

The precise nature of the Starbucks background check may differ from store to store. Different states have different laws about how companies can handle background checks. In general, though, the primary component of this process will be a criminal background check. This report will contain information about misdemeanors and felonies in the individual’s history. Managers will look for evidence of potential problems, such as very recent convictions for violent crimes. This check also consults sex offender registries.

Starbucks may verify your employment history, especially for positions requiring experience. The company is less likely to verify your education history. However, they may check the references you list on your resume. A credit check is unlikely except for some rare occasions where a role may involve handling large amounts of cash.

How Many Years Back Does Starbucks Check?

Starbucks considers the last seven years of an applicant’s criminal record. However, the reports they use may not always report only seven years old or newer convictions. The FCRA does not place heavy restrictions on reporting criminal conviction information over time. However, most information reported about the company’s hiring process indicates a seven-year “lookback” period. Remember, Starbucks assesses all convictions on a case-by-case basis. Time is an important factor in those considerations.

How Long Does a Background Check Take After a Job Offer?

Most Starbucks background checks don’t take very long at all. You should typically expect a response within about one week or five business days. Some checks may return faster, especially if your report contains no criminal history. Others may take longer. Delays can occur because of factors outside of Starbuck’s control. Such factors include delays at the courts or backlogs at reporting agencies. If you have not heard back about your background check results, you should contact your hiring manager for further details.

What Starbucks Does if You Don’t Pass a Background Check

If you pass the Starbucks background check, you can move forward and begin work soon. If not, the company must follow the law and alert you. If your criminal history is a deciding factor, you must receive a pre-adverse action notice. This notice comes with a free copy of the report used to make the decision. Review this carefully to ensure the company received accurate and complete information about your history. If there are issues, you should respond promptly to the notice and dispute the findings. Starbucks will have to put the process on hold to have their partner investigate the issue.

In some cases, you may be able to reverse a failed Starbucks background check. However, that is not always the case. You’ll lose the conditional job offer if you cannot open a dispute or if no issues arise in the investigation. Starbucks will provide you with a final adverse action notice containing your rights information.

Know Before You Apply: See Your Own Report Today

Starbucks has repeatedly drawn attention to its “ban the box” policies, urging Congress to act more on the subject. The company’s case-by-case considerations also mean felons may find job opportunities here. However, that doesn’t mean the company hires anyone and everyone with a criminal record. Before applying, it may be a good idea to understand better what your report says.

What will a hiring manager see in your report? You can answer that question for yourself when you order your own background check report. We make obtaining a copy of the reports simple, similar to what you may find in Starbucks background checks. With this understanding, you can better plan your approach to the process. Order your report today to find out more.

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Michael Klazema

About Michael Klazema The author

Michael Klazema is the lead author and editor for Dallas-based with a focus on human resource and employment screening developments

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