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How to Prepare for an Employment Background Check

by Sam

Employers usually do extensive background checks on the shortlisted candidates. The higher the position, the deeper they dig. 

So, if you are going on an interview with Apple or Google, rest assured they’ll dig out a ton of information about you before the interview.

While preparing for an employment background check, you should try to eliminate as many red flags as possible that will prevent them from hiring you. Here is how to do it.

What Do Employers Check About a Potential Employee?

A standard employer’s background check may include information from these fields:

  • Criminal Record
  • Driving Record
  • Education & Academic History
  • List of Professional Qualifications
  • Credit Score & Financial History
  • Health Status
  • Social Media Profiles

The following paragraphs will address each of the areas listed above and give you tips on repairing potential bad sectors and filling in critical gaps.

1. Criminal Record

Let’s be honest; former inmates stand tiny chances of landing a well-paid job with a big company. Even if you’ve been charged with a serious offense and later acquitted by a court of law, future employers may remain suspicious. 

If you fall in either category, you should share this disturbing information with the interviewer and hope they appreciate your honesty.

2. Driving Record

If you have a slew of traffic violations across several states, it’ll be tough to convince your future employer that they can entrust you with a service car. 

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If you are applying for a job as a driver, road safety always comes first. If you’ve got a botched driving record, try to find a job that does not involve driving and, preferably, is within walking distance from your home or well-connected to public transport. 

3. Education & Academic History

To fix any gaps or discrepancies in this field, you should do a background check on yourself on an appropriate website. 

This is necessary because academic records hardly ever appear in a standard search. Once you notice any gaps or inaccuracies in your academic records, do not hesitate to contact your university or college and request assistance with those issues.

4. Professional Qualifications

Never lie about your professional qualifications in your resume. Suppose your employer asked you to work on a machine you had misinformed them you were familiar with? Your incompetence will quickly surface, and it may even put other employees at risk.

If you have outdated professional qualifications or licenses, make sure they do not appear online to mislead future employers.

5. Credit Score & Financial History

Employers pay a lot of attention to a potential employee’s credit score. If you have defaulted on a student loan or a car lease, you should do whatever it takes to fix your botched credit rating.

To start, make sure to pay your bills on time every month and don’t max out your credit card. If you have long overdue telecom bills, go and pay them ASAP! Your future employers must see you are responsible with money!

6. Health Status

While potential employers can’t get 100% access to your medical history, it’s not a good idea to skip your annual screenings and dental checks.

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Employers will hire individuals who are responsible for their health. Such employees are a valuable asset to every company because they are unlikely to take sick leave often.

7. Social Media Profiles

The last item on our list may take the longest to clean up and fix. You should start removing questionable content from your social media profiles at least two months before filing your job application.

LinkedIn

This is the platform where all online headhunting takes place. It would be best to have an impeccable LinkedIn profile with all of its sections filled in neatly and to the last detail. 

Still don’t have one? Go and open an account right now! Choose a relevant formal photo and populate all sections with up-to-date information. 

Also, tell the people you’ve listed as personal references that potential employers might contact them.

Facebook

You’ll be surprised to find out how much information Facebook stores about each user. If you have had an account since the platform’s inception in 2007, you will have your work cut out for you. Work with the privacy tab to ensure only your most presentable content appears in public searches.

Instagram

Browse all of your visual content and delete any discrediting pictures, comments, or posts. Make any photos where you are in a suit and tie at an official function public. 

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