The Phoenix metropolitan area, also known as Metro Phoenix, ranks as the eleventh most populous metro region in the US. The district also claims a spot on the list of fastest-growing metro areas, with more than a million new individuals taking up residence in Metro Phoenix over the past two decades. Although it consists of only two counties, Maricopa and Pinal, the region boasts a population of approximately 4.7 million people. Not just populous but also massive, Metro Phoenix spans nearly 1200 square miles and includes major cities such as Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, and Mesa, and Gilbert. 

Ranked 15th in metropolitan GDP, Phoenix is an attractive location for businesses and headquarters several major companies alongside a robust manufacturing industry. PetSmart calls Phoenix home as does electronics giant Avnet. Other businesses, including American Airlines, have large regional offices in the area. 

Because of its central role in the economy of Arizona, Metro Phoenix is a desirable location for those seeking employment. Given the broad urbanized area, the interlinked system of Interstates and freeways, and the abundance of local economic opportunity, the region is home to many employees who commute for work regularly. These commuters may travel between the region’s constituent counties or other  neighboring  counties.

Based on these factors, employers building a team in Metro Phoenix should carefully consider the structure of their background check procedures. For example, a business based in Phoenix may currently only request criminal history information from Maricopa County. However, if an applicant lived in Pinal County and was previously arrested or convicted there, such information could be essential to consider as you make an important decision. Expanding vetting policies to include a search of the entire region (or a statewide search) can reveal some of these important facts. In doing so, always remain aware of the rules in place to respect privacy and fairness.

In Arizona, several municipalities, such as Phoenix and Tempe, have implemented “ban the box” rules which apply to public employers. Private businesses may include criminal history questions on initial applications and use these answers in making decisions. Similarly, there are no statewide restrictions governing the use of arrest and conviction records for employment purposes. However, organizations such as the Arizona Civil Rights Division strongly encourage employers to carefully weigh these facts and not to use convictions as automatic disqualifiers. Relying on EEOC guidance can provide a helpful framework for non-discriminatory practices. offers hiring managers and business owners the opportunity to streamline their vetting procedures through a comprehensive metropolitan area background check. These reports gather information from both Pinal and Maricopa counties into a straightforward report. With the large area occupied by Metro Phoenix and a workforce constantly on the move, these options allow employers to hire with all the most important facts at their disposal. 



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