How to Hire a Gig Worker: Background Checks for Contractors and Part-Timers


Gig worker delivery driver with background check to work safely

The gig economy demands better hiring practices – fast, frictionless vetting and onboarding so employees can get started on your platform right away is critical. However, we believe an easy, seamless setup and positive candidate experience shouldn’t undermine safety or influence whether you complete comprehensive background screening.

If you still think background screening, running criminal record checks and identity verification, is something that takes a long time, you’ve come to the right place! Certn offers the world’s easiest online background checks with results in minutes instead of days or weeks.

Do you need gig worker background checks? We’ve got you covered. With 20,000 partners across 40 cities, Fantuan is the largest Asian food delivery service in North America, Australia, and the United Kingdom. Fantuan relies on 17,000 drivers to fulfill orders for their two million customers. With Certn, Fantuan can easily run global background checks for gig workers without the added cost of more full-time employees at its headquarters. Learn more about how Certn helps Fantuan run gig worker background checks and hire trusted contractors by reading the case study.

This is just one example of how we’re helping companies hire gig workers. Keep reading to learn more about what to consider as part of gig hiring, why background checks are essential, and how to navigate the process with more ease.

Gig worker with clean background check delivering Amazon packages

Embracing the Gig Economy Revolution

The rise of the gig economy has transformed the way businesses operate, from hiring specialists for project-based tasks to filling departments with temporary contractors, it’s also spawned marketplace platforms for everything from ride sharing to grocery delivery. From freelance writers to delivery drivers, these casual workers play a crucial role in countless industries, providing on-demand services that meet the evolving needs of modern consumers.

When hiring for roles in the gig economy, we know the focus is on being able to find the best talent for short contract work. Even if everything “looks good on paper,” a deeper understanding of a candidate is always recommended.

The Importance of Background Checks for Contractors and Part-Timers

While gig workers bring unparalleled flexibility and scalability to the table, they also present unique challenges when it comes to hiring and risk management. Unlike traditional employees, these employees operate on a contractual basis, making it essential for businesses to conduct thorough background checks to ensure they’re making informed hiring decisions even when ramping up quickly or collaborating for short periods of time.

Understanding the Risks of Gig Workers

Hiring gig workers without proper vetting can expose businesses to a range of risks, including:

  • Legal Liability: Negligent hiring practices can lead to legal issues if your worker engages in misconduct or illegal activities while representing your brand.
  • Reputation Damage: Incidents involving gig workers can tarnish your company’s reputation and erode consumer trust, potentially leading to long-term consequences.
  • Security Concerns: Depending on the nature of your business, hiring workers without background checks can compromise sensitive information and data security.

Navigating the Gig Worker Background Check Process

Fortunately, with the right approach, hiring gig workers can be a seamless and risk-free process. Here’s how to conduct effective background checks for contractors and part-timers:

  1. Define Your Screening Criteria: Before diving into the background check process, clearly outline the criteria you’ll use to evaluate potential gig workers. Consider factors such as criminal history, employment verification, and relevant qualifications.
  1. Choose the Right Screening Partner: Partner with a reputable background check vendor that specializes in screening gig workers. Look for providers with experience in the gig economy and marketplace and a track record of delivering accurate and comprehensive reports. In our case, Certn is SOC 2 compliant and works with other technology companies and our background screening API integrates flexibly in online marketplaces and gig platforms.
  1. Request Consent: Obtain written consent from gig workers before initiating the background check process. Clearly communicate the purpose of the screening and ensure compliance with relevant privacy laws and regulations. Don’t worry, this process is built into our online workflow.
  1. Conduct Comprehensive Checks: Leverage a range of screening tools and verifications to gather relevant information about gig workers. This may include criminal record checks, identity verification, employment history verification, and drug testing, depending on your specific requirements.
  1. Review and Evaluate Results: Once background checks are complete, carefully review the results to assess the suitability of gig workers for your business. Consider factors such as the nature and severity of any findings, as well as the individual’s overall qualifications and experience.
  1. Maintain Compliance: Ensure that your background check process complies with all applicable laws and regulations, including the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) in the United States and similar legislation in other jurisdictions. Protect gig workers’ privacy rights and provide them with an opportunity to dispute any inaccuracies in their background reports.

Communicate Transparently: Throughout the hiring process, maintain open and transparent communication with gig workers regarding background check procedures, outcomes, and any implications for their employment.

Food delivery gig worker on bike working safely due to background check

The Bottom Line on Gig Work

In today’s gig economy, hiring contractors and part-time workers requires a strategic and diligent approach to background screening. By prioritizing thorough vetting processes and partnering with trusted screening providers, businesses can mitigate risks, uphold their reputation, and build a reliable network of gig workers who contribute to their success.

Elevate Your Gig Worker Background Screening Strategy

At Certn, we understand the unique challenges of hiring part-time and contract workers in the gig economy. With our comprehensive background screening solutions, you can confidently navigate the hiring process and build a team of gig workers you can trust. Book a demo with one of our screening experts to learn more about our services and take the next step toward workforce excellence.