Applying for a DBS Check: How Does it Work?

Applying for a DBS Check is a vital part of the recruitment process for lots of organisations.

If your organisation is one of them, chances are you’re familiar with the application process – but what happens after you hit ‘submit’?

Here’s our step-by-step guide to the journey of a DBS Check application.

applying for a dbs check

Step 1: Completing the application form


When applying for a DBS Check, the first step is always filling in the application form. The applicant will provide their personal information and identity documents, and the employer will carry out the identity check and complete the application.

If you use an online platform like ours, you’ll be guided through the application with handy prompts to help you avoid mistakes.


Step 2: Countersigning


If you use an umbrella body like us, the application will be sent for countersigning after you submit it.

As countersignatories, we review the application before sending it off. If we have any queries we’ll leave a note on the application and you’ll receive an email notification – otherwise we’ll countersign it and submit it to the DBS within one working hour.


Step 3: The DBS receives the application


After countersigning, the DBS will receive the application and assign it a reference number.


Step 4: The five DBS Checking stages


The application will then go through five stages:

  • The DBS validates the application
  • The applicant’s personal information is checked against the Police National Computer to see whether they have any spent or unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands or final warnings.
  • If the applicant is eligible, they’ll be checked against the adults’ and/or children’s barred list to see whether they’ve been barred from working with vulnerable adults and/or children.
  • If it’s an Enhanced Check, the application will be sent to the applicant’s local police force, who will search their records for any other relevant information about the applicant.
  • The application will then be complete.


Step 5: The results are issued


Once the check is complete, the DBS will issue the results. The employer will be notified and the applicant will receive their certificate in the post.

DBS Checks vary in the amount of time they take, but our checks complete within 48 hours on average.


Applying for a DBS Check: Ready to get started?


We hope our guide has made the process of applying for a DBS Check a bit more transparent.

If you have any more questions we’d be happy to answer them – just give us a call.

If you’re ready to start applying for a DBS Check, you can get going with our simple online platform now. Registration is free, and only takes a few minutes – then you’ll only pay for the checks you need.