Gig and contract workers have become a vital component of the world’s economy, offering an accessible workforce to organizations in need of extra talent. However, given the remote nature of many contract positions, it’s not uncommon to hire new talent without ever meeting them in person. Verifying that these contract workers are who they say they are is far trickier in a purely remote environment.
Identity validation is essential for companies contracting work out to individuals they have not yet or have no intention of meeting in the flesh. Handling this crucial step in the onboarding process requires careful attention to detail and simply cannot be done correctly without the right technology.
There are multiple reasons to take verifying contract workers’ identities seriously, such as:
- Providing records of payments of over $600 in a given tax year. This is typically handled with a W9 form from the IRS for each contractor, though other forms may also apply.
- Proving that the contract you have signed with your contractor is legally valid and binding, especially if you have never met in person.
- Verifying payment information before any payments are sent.
The steps below should help you take charge of validating your contractors’ identities with the help of modern techniques and implements that match the evolving nature of online labor.
Step 1: Review Their Resume
Understanding your contractor’s background before committing to working with them is always important. However, it’s even more crucial when you work with remote contractors. A resume alone will not be enough to ensure you know who you are dealing with, but it’s a start.
To better understand a contractor you are considering doing business with, it helps to have a few references who have already worked with them. Questions worth asking the references include:
- What was your relationship with the contractor?
- Were they dependable?
- Would you work with them again?
Granted, these questions fall flat without first verifying legal identification that confirms the contractor is who they claim to be. ID validation tech like Intellicheck’s platform can help by leveraging facial liveness detection when matching a person’s picture with the image on their ID.
Step 2: Fill Out a W9 Form
In the U.S., employers are legally required to obtain a W9 form from any contractor who is a U.S. person that you pay more than $600 in a given tax year. This form should be completed with the following information and kept on file at your place of business in case of an audit.
- The contractor’s social security number or employer identification number
- The contractor’s address
- The contractor’s business entity type
Step 3: Use ID Validation Technology
ID validation technology should be at the core of your contractor onboarding process. When your company first picks out contractors, ask them to submit a government ID to verify that they are exactly who they say they are. This makes every other step in this article far more effective, as the individual’s ID has already been checked and confirmed as genuine.
Intellicheck validates the ID and matches the ID with the person presenting it. This helps ensure that you know with high certainty that the person you are working with is who they say they are.
The Most Crucial Step
Each of these steps is great on its own, but only the right technology can give you complete confidence that the person you are hiring for contract work is who they claim to be. Intellicheck offers the right technology for the job.
With Intellicheck, you can quickly and effectively determine if the person that you hired online is truly who they say they are — with industry-leading 99.9% accuracy. In a fraction of a second, you can be certain of who you are hiring.