At some point in your job application process, youâ€™ll probably have to face a background check. For most, the background check is not so intimidating. We know we havenâ€™t done anything significantly wrong that could compromise job eligibility.
What many donâ€™t realize, however, is that employers take a lot more into consideration than criminal history. This is why itâ€™s good to know how to prepare for an employment background check. Here are some tips from your friends at Dale Carnegie Training of South Carolina:
Get a Copy of Your Credit Report â€” Nowadays, employers look closely at candidatesâ€™ credit reports to determine eligibility. Why? They use the credit report to see whether you may have financial issues that are encouraging you to apply for the job. Also, they view a report filled with missed payments as an indicator of your lack of reliability.
So before you start seriously applying for jobs, itâ€™s a good idea to obtain a copy of your credit report from the three main credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) and clear up any mistakes that could affect your score. You will need to allow between 30 and 45 days for an investigation to clear, so give yourself this much time in advance of applying for jobs if possible.
Check On Your Motor Vehicle Record â€” Employers look at your driving record, just as they do your credit report, to determine reliability. If you have suspensions, DUIs, or other negative information on your record, you could lose your opportunity for employment. So order a copy of your driving record to ensure all information is accurate and up to date before a background check begins.
Make Sure Online Profiles Are Professional or Hidden â€” This is perhaps todayâ€™s biggest detriment to job seekers. Employers also love to explore candidatesâ€™ social networking profiles to determine eligibility. If you had a night out getting drunk with friends, be sure to avoid posting any photos of your exploits on your page. And if you must post them, then set them to private so that people who are not on your friends list canâ€™t see them. Also, you could change the name of your social profiles so that you remain anonymous, thereby avoiding having a company count you out based solely upon your nightlife.
Avoid White Lies on Your Resume â€” Because a company will likely conduct a background check, itâ€™s important to make sure all of the information you place on your resume is accurate. Donâ€™t say you worked at a company for five years when it was really three. And donâ€™t state that you received a bachelorâ€™s degree when you really have an associateâ€™s. These little details could make a difference to employers who feel that little white lies could turn into major trust and reliability issues on the job.
Rememberâ€”the more you do to prepare for a background check, the less likely you are to be turned down for a job. So keep this in mind as you push for the job you want.
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