IT Employment

Employee background screenings up dramatically

Employers are screening job applicants for credit problems and criminal backgrounds more and more.

According to the Workforce Management site, because of the explosive growth in the background screening industry during the past decade, criminal credit checks of job candidates are becoming nearly universal. They estimate that 16 percent of employers now screen their existing employees on an ongoing basis (that's up from 12 percent a year ago).

Note: This blog post is also available as a PDF download.

HireRight, a background screening provider based in Irvine, California, conducted a study in which they surveyed 1,411 employers of all sizes from more than 15 industries. They found that:

  • 93 percent of employers report that they run criminality checks, up from 85 percent in 2008.
  • 84 percent of employers conduct comprehensive screening before the first day of work; 8 percent screen immediately after the start.
  • 10 percent of employers report that screening adversely affects the hiring decision in a staggering 50 percent or more of the cases.
  • 71 percent of employers report that their organization conducts screening to "reduce risk to the organization"; 68 percent say the purpose is to "ensure a safer workplace."
  • Employee screening used to happen more commonly in certain industries, but the practice is becoming more widespread across industries.

Is it legal?

Though many employers say their organizations conduct screening to reduce the risk to the organization or to ensure a safer workplace, many are using the screenings to whittle down long lists of job applicants. In essence, they are using criminal records or poor credit histories to make character judgments against job candidates when there is no job-related or business necessity.

Whether you believe the result of a screening is a correct predictor of behavior and performance or not, the act of screening for that purpose is coming up against new legislative restrictions and legal challenges.

For example, on October 1, 2009, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) filed a discrimination lawsuit against Freeman Cos., a corporate events marketing company that it claims has rejected job applicants based on their credit history and if they had criminal charges in their background. The EEOC says these exclusionary practices are not job-related or justified by business necessity.

Are the results indicative of employee performance?

According to Workforce Management, EEOC hearings on screening practices in November 2008 included expert testimony that the results are not good predictors of employee behavior or performance. In addition to greater EEOC scrutiny of criminal record screening practices, a growing number of states now prohibit or limit pre-employment arrest inquiries.

New technologies

One of the reasons employee screening is becoming so widespread is that there are a slew of technologies, initially used by anti-terrorism and police interrogation, now available to private-sector employers. For example, Suspect Detection Systems Ltd., an Israeli security company, is now marketing its Cogito "hostile intent" detection technology to employers.

There's even a free iPhone application that lets users conduct background screening on any person if the user inputs basic personal information. So even if you're not blabbing about your every personal event on Facebook or Twitter, your life could be an open book.

How do you feel about the practice of screening job candidates for reasons other than business necessity (e.g., a financial firm has restrictions against hiring a person who has been indicted for embezzlement)? Let's take a poll:

About

Toni Bowers is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.

211 comments
rough_N_ready
rough_N_ready

1st Due to the recent Economic Disaster BAD Credit may be the norm rather than the exception.For Example: If a customer closes a Revolving Credit card because the issuer has doubled or tippled the interest, that negatively affects FICO Score, also the other result of Recession, the shared suffering millions have endured as a result of job loss, declining investment and home values. The system is set up to make one appear a bad risk rather than a good risk which is less profitable. 2nd. In the U.S.A. the criminal justice system makes Felons out of people that in other civilized nations would be considered to have a Medical Issue. There should be some regulations that in Employment background checks they can only report the facts about Violent crimes such as rape,pedophiles, murder and a few non-violent such as embezzlement and robbery, although a statement should be attached as it can be with a credit file. IF I HAD USED the information I obtained I would most likely have not hired what in retrospect were some of the best and most productive employees I had during my career.

paul.chana
paul.chana

I have a record and it's not fair as you are proving to others, it wasn't your fault. You shouldn't be penalized for something you did 10 years ago? Even those who work there committ some sort of act of undisciplinary acts. Employers should not hold such findings too strictly against those who are willing to make the effort to work.

message4me
message4me

It is possible to have bad credit and be an excellent worker. I've never had really good credit. No bancruptcy or anything like that but alot of late payments due to lack of budgeting etc. I was employed by a company who had 700 employees in 1979 and worked there for 25 years before retiring. I was very dedicated to the company and even put the company before my family. I was respected for my work ethics by my peers and management. I earned several awards recognizing my acomplishments and was in the top 2% of top achievers. I never missed work for no reason. I am opposed to the use of credit reports for non related uses such as employment.

joni
joni

I just wish employers would spend as much time dealing with problem behaviors when they come up. Policies, procedures, etc. will never trump dealing with the actual problem when it surfaces. Joni E. Johnston, Psy.D.

esteban.blanco
esteban.blanco

Where I work they do a very extensive background check before you start work BUT I work for a financial services company (Fortune 500 company). I believe in this case it is necessary to make sure people that have access to credit card numbers, etc. should be screened. On the other hand; if the screening is based on credit history, my concern would be if there is a candidate that is responsible, had great credit but lost his/her job and went bankrupt or lost their home, etc. There are a lot of people in that boat and I don't think it would be fair for them not to get a job based on that. I think that an explanation and perhaps even proof of that situation would be acceptable so this person can get the job.

rocky49152
rocky49152

It's one thing to reject employees with an egregious criminal past (ie. fraud) who are applying for a job requiring access to an internal credit system, but why on earth would any employer think it should be their business to hire (or terminate) someone based on the fact that they have debt?! It seems to be yet another catch-22 in the system - people have loans they can't pay because they don't have a job, and an employer doesn't give them a job because they have loans to pay. Advocates of the "If you aren't doing anything wrong" viewpoint - take notes and pay attention.

dustinmatia
dustinmatia

Ok so, please read my reply on "I agree!!" I was wondering, would it be to hard for the gov to watch irresponsible small business practices as much as they do large corps? I mean really, the small companies are just as bad as the large ones, if you ignore the scale. Something needs to be done to the people that cause all of this snowball effect greed. For example, and investors say "Joe blow, that's a great idea, I will make a return fast on your business plan that will slowly rip the customer off" oh cmon now people, you know that is how it is. Otherwise investors/owners wouldnt make the money they "want" not down to earth need. My point is we as a nation are in serious need of a reality check, we as a nation are guilty of gluttony. Due to the result of this, people that are fat, meaning that are used to taking to much (compared to the rest of the world) are starving for something that they used to "wanting" and maybe they will realize what they only needed when they do lose their job. They will stop buying what they want, and realize what they need. As a result, they won't be able to pay the credit for their items that wasn't really necessary in the first place. We are all guilty of taking more than we really need. I speak all of this from experience. This country sucks over 10 % of the worlds reasources, I would say that this nation as a whole need a humbling experience. Crack down on the large corps and the small ones, and the people will follow along. Of course, this is my opinion.

David Lean
David Lean

In the UK we offer a service to keep an IT Contractor's screening record up to date at all times so they can move into employment seamlessly. It saves the hassle of having to go through the whole process over and over again

g-man_863
g-man_863

Over the past few years, I have been on both sides of the fence: Interviewing prospective employees, then having to interview when the company I was working for went belly up. This post is a bit on the long side, so please bear with me. The issue is not IF criminal background and credit reports are used, but HOW they are used. Getting a criminal background check on a prospective employee is a must, regardless of their position. In my opinion, the three biggest issues are sex offenses, violent crimes and theft. If cities and states can ban sex offenders from living near a school or playground, a business should have the right to ban them from employment. Many of the people I hired were for delivery and in-home service positions. If someone was raped or molested by an employee while on company time (aside from the ethical issues), the bad press and resulting lawsuits could shut the business down. Violent crimes are also fair game. I once made the mistake of hiring a sales clerk who had two strikes on her background check for threats and menacing (she explained then away as the end of a bad relationship). Within three months of her hire, I was getting complaints from her co-workers (who knew nothing about the background check) about her hostile attitude and threats being made in the workplace. In order to fire her without involking the wrath of the EEOC, I had to install audio and video survellience to catch her in the act. Even after her termination, many of the staff (including me) had worries of a disgruntled ex-employee goes Columbine revenge act on her part (luckily this never happened). Theft convictions are a no-brainer: Studies show that up to 90% of a business' theft losses are at the hands of employees. If someone lost a job because they fleeced a prior employer out of thousands of dollars I damn sure need to know this. Credit checks require human review of the circumstances surrounding the FICO score. Most bureau reports go back 7 years. If a candidate had acceptable credit up to the time they became unemployed or had a family medical issue, it's a non-issue for me. For entry-level positions (warehouse, delivery helper, etc.), I don't even bother with a credit check: At a $9-$10 per hour starting wage, I know we're not going to attract people with a 700+ score. Drug tests are a liability issue and are required by many business insurance polocies. An employee who dies due to a stoned co-worker dropping a 200-pound crate off a warehouse rack is just as dead as someone who is killed due to a drunken airline pilot. Most of the issues on background checks and drug testing are due to ignorance or abuses on the part of the employer: During my time of underemployment, my final interview with one company included a question on all the medications I had taken over the past five years. My response to this question was that health care profiling is illegal and that the employer could go f--k themselves; I would not work for a company that engaged in illegal hiring practices. The company I did go to work for delayed my hire date by two weeks: I tested positive for a "drug" that is a legally prescribed medication and had to politely remind the HR director that I had not received a call from the testing lab's Medical Review Officer (MRO) to discuss the results. Within 30 minutes of speaking to the MRO (he called my pharmacy to verify the prescriptrion), the company's HR director called, apologized and told me to start Monday.

mikifinaz1
mikifinaz1

1. Don't do anything online and use an avatar (LIE) 2. Get a lawyer, I have my own pet lawyer and when I show up with him it really shakes things up in my favor. Well worth the investment, it is true "a lawyer can get more money legally than a hundred armed men." There are a couple of municipalities and corporations that rue the day they decided to screw with me and my pet lawyer. 3. Setup up corporations and trusts to handle all your tracable activities that will shield your identity. 4. Trust no one until you screen them. I had a company try to screw me, by attempting to lure me in to work for them and then burn me for my compensation. However, I had checked them out and forced them to pay me upfront in installments. It's nice to be needed. Needless to say the went looking for more gulible prey after waltzing with me.

luvwknd
luvwknd

Everybody employed in this sector needs to unite together and help our common cause(s); which in my opinion is 1) underpaid for the knowledge we possess and 2) being asked to do more with that knowledge for less and on a daily basis. There is NO reason a CEO is making a 6 figure salary and he couldn't even come close to doing I.T. work, nor could he effectively do his job without I.T; however many very skilled I.T. professionals could probably step in and successfully perform CEO duties effectively, in some cases better, however we are typically nowhere near making the same salary as the CEO. United States Information Technology Employees Constitution We the People of the I.T. sector, in Order to form a more perfect employment Union, establish employment Justice, insure employment Tranquility, provide for the common employment security, promote the general employment Welfare, and secure the Blessings of employment Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the I.T. employees? of the United States of America.

C.barbosa
C.barbosa

I think it is a good idea to run a background screening. Some of the post here do make a valid reason, however I strongly believe that each case should be handled individually. The nature of the crime /charge, the age of the individual at the time the arrest was made, obviously the nature of the crime, and is this person a habitual offender? All these factor should come into play before an adverse decision is made. Think about this for a second, How would you know if candidate that is a successful hire is a criminal that has never been caught? That's the criminal that should worry companies but how do you know who he/she is? Well you won't know till something happens, Don't take my word for it just look at the news, CEO's, doctors, Politicians, the list goes on and on, do you think they had criminal convictions when they got hired? In contrast the individual who has a record and is honestly looking for a second chance will have alot to prove not only to the company but to him /her self and can at time yield to be a model employee Sometimes bad things happen to good people. Everyone deserves a second chance at life.

terrific
terrific

In all fairness, what about employer screenings by prospective employees? Applicants should have a credit check run on the employer, understand the employers safety record, find out if the company has been fined or operating with controversial ethics. Do they pay their employees fairly? Has the management team got any background of crime, are they a terrorist organization or do they sponsor them,what is their record with customer satisfaction, employee satisfaction? Is the manager a drunk? Is he on drugs? Employers would not be so eager to test employees if it were a two way street.

mSn mSN
mSn mSN

When I was in college in the early 70's I was picked up with a friend for kicking a phone booth. It was found that I had a coffee mug from a local establishment in my pocket. I was charged with larceny. This is on my criminal record. Not what was taken but just larceny. It follows me today.When an employer sees the report I am sure that I will not get hired. Wow a coffee mug..

amccrack2001
amccrack2001

This is another example of the movement toward tyranny in America. The discrimination works against the law abiding middle class or working class citizen whom is threatened by termination on a daily basis from the boss, the HR Dept./Recruiting Agency, or both. The management has the upper hand because they have the power to buffer themselves from the undesirable effects of unethical company politics. The corporate criminals are part of the management team, not the workers.

ania_dublin
ania_dublin

Let's say, I have a bad credit record but the best will to pay my debts off. How the hell am I supposed to do it without getting a job? Apart from that, am i allowed to screen my employer as well? Probably not, and he has enough assets to go get clean out of every felony he may commit.

ab1963
ab1963

I can understand not hiring because of a criminal record But making a judgement based on credit history is just wrong specially in light of the current economic climate and/or other circumstances like divorce etc. Do these company's actually and carefully study your credit record and history or do they just make their judgements based on credit score?Regarding credit , what criteria do they employ?

tarekokail
tarekokail

Credit screening is only justified in cases where the prospective employee has a fiduciary responsibility and access to confidential financial information; Banking, financial advising, stock trading, law, insurance, and any job which processes and extends credit. Any other use is discriminatory.

vince
vince

Criminal background checks are completely different than credit checks. If this nation begins to use individuals credit ratings as employment criteria, our available workforce will be cut by at least 50%. Not to mention the privacy and ethical issues involved. It would seem to me that giving those who encountered difficult financial obstacles the opportunity to once again become a productive member of our economic engine to be good for the nation. I understand the desire to reduce risk, but American corporations have much less risk today due to legislative policy. The US middle class did not create the current economic problems yet we are suffering the most. Now those who run the nation (Corporations) want to make us suffer even more for their failings? Nice country we live in. The poll is ineffective due to the directed nature of the 2 answers.

pacygan
pacygan

My daughter had been an IT architect (whatever that entails, I don't know--I'm a chemist). Over a year ago, she was the victim of identity theft by a very knowledgeable and vindictive individual. This led to her losing her job. Since it was in a sensitive industry, she has been having great difficulty in gaining employment since. I believe that any background checks should include the input from the candidate, especially when negative issues arise.

matt
matt

I think this country is altogether too "Employer" based. You need an "Employer" to get healthcare... I guess I better not piss off my "Employer" or he could take away my healthcare and my wife could die.. and now, since we're spent all of our money and our health insurance doesn't cover her "experimental" cancer treatments, I'll have a hard time finding another job because our credit is now shot.. Think about it people... really There comes a time where you have to take a few risks on an employee (watch them carefully and take a chance) because it's not worth it to give up our civil rights in the name of "security".

foreigner
foreigner

Sorry Toni, but this time your article is only tabloid quality. The reason: insufficient information. Although the study referred to 15 industries in California, what is the relationship to IT? When I read that ?10 percent of employers report that screening adversely affects the hiring decision in a staggering 50 percent or more of the cases? I am only staggered by the lack of specific statistics. In addition the the lack of information about the employer side, there is insufficient statistical information about employee candidates (job category, revenue class, quintile, decile?)? Perhaps most ex-criminals are forced by society to hang out in the low-wage end of the economy. I got more value from the responses. Osiyo53?s contribution was particularly appreciated. Screenings are overall and for most general cases, just another example of the relatively rich (money, power) dominating the relatively poor (money, power) just because they have the power and will to do so and have nothing more productive to do ? no merit to the powerful, no fault to the powerless and no long term benefit to society.

rahuldesh
rahuldesh

Screening for poor credit history makes ones life and job prospects miserable and is not acceptable due to the fact that, he might have been in this trouble due to recession or any other form of job loss or even due to his other family problems. This kind of job denial based on poor credit history is not at all acceptable.

ericchenry
ericchenry

I couldn't participate in your poll because of the wording of the responses. I don't think employers have legal rights to "choose the best candidate however they want to do it." Making a hire is, in fact, a discriminatory practice because the employer has chosen one person over another person based on specific hiring criteria. I think it is legal to "discriminate" against a person who does not have the proper credentials, licenses, experience, writing skills, communication skills, technical skills, work ethic..... I think it would be legal to pass over a potential hire to work in a job that requires the handling of money and/or confidential if that person has been convicted, not accused, of theft. Having an arrest record should never be used to determine a person's character; a conviction is another matter, but once again, if a person broke a law and took the punishment, I think that person deserves the opportunity to become gainfully employed again. Otherwise, we may as well just keep everyone in jail once they land there--sort of a one strike and you're out approach. I think it would be illegal to pass over a candidate who has a poor credit history for dozens of reasons, not the least of which is the rampant crime of identity theft where a worthy person's credit history can be decimated in a matter of hours.

jmarkovic32
jmarkovic32

I'm shaking in my boots as I type this because I feel I'm very close to getting hired, but I'm worried about my credit history. A few years ago I co-signed on a vehichle with a family member. Then that family member got laid off and the car ended up getting repoed. I hope that doesn't disqualify me. This brings up the issue of credit checks perpetuating unemployment and more credit problems. Alot of people these days are bankrupt and in foreclosure because they don't have a paycheck. Then an employer sees the bankruptcy or foreclosure on their report and disqualifies them. Now don't get me wrong, I'm all for credit checks when they are appropriate. An armored truck driver should have impeccable credit. A CIA and FBI employee should have flawless credit. A bank teller shouldn't have bad credit. Why? Because in each case, the employee could be tempted to steal money or classified information for money. However, using a credit check as a predictor is stupid. I was 25 years old when I ruined my credit. Since then I've taken steps to improve it and have even paid off some accounts. I've never missed or had a late car payment. My renters record is spotless. I pay all of my bills on time. Yet if I had a foreclosure or bankruptcy on my report I'm disqualified from getting a job. Something is not right. Especially in this economy, such practices are just wrong, short-sighted and downright lazy.

bblackmoor
bblackmoor

I do not really have a problem with background checks. That is public information. Credit checks are a little more iffy. If the candidate will be handling money, perhaps it is warranted. If the candidate will be working in the banking sector, a background check and a credit check are actually mandated by law. The insult and humiliation of "drug screening" is another matter altogether. My medical information is between MY doctor and ME -- it is no one else's business, period. When I was younger, I would comply with unreasonable demands because I did not know any better. I am older and wiser now. I will consent to the insult and humiliation of pre- or post-employment drug testing if and only if the person making the request has a truly compelling reason for asking. One compelling reason would be a Federal security clearance. Another would be if I have life-or-death responsibility for another person. Another person's life is more important than my dignity and privacy. "Company policy" is NOT a compelling reason, nor is any reason which has money as its bottom line: my dignity can't be bought. And to be perfectly frank, any company that begins a business relationship with humiliation and invasion of privacy should be avoided like the scum they are. http://www.blackgate.net/blog/index.php?s=drug+testing

wolfshades
wolfshades

And if you've been the main bread-winner in the family, then you are more than likely going to have bad credit rating for a while. So you're in a catch-22, just like anyone who's been hit hard by the economy, and you can't get a decent job because they're screening your credit situation. I'd say yes - it's discriminatory. And a criminal records check? Well it really depends upon the crime, doesn't it? If you smoked pot, then maybe they shouldn't have hired you and perhaps Bill Clinton should never have gotten HIS job either. Right.

bellwethers
bellwethers

Employers nationwide have seen the EEOC become active in investigating employer hiring practices - http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2010/08/12/background-checks-in-hiring-discrimination-or-due-diligence/ Personally, I think every felon whether trumped up from a misdemeanor by an overly ambitious officer or not should simply be executed to save a world of misery. But in a perfect world the guilty would never escape being caught, mistakes would not be made, and we would all be free of sin. Fortunately we have something like the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that professes to be more than a drive by, hit and run web surfer, dilettante, or pressured and biased HR official to help the world go round.

rocky49152
rocky49152

"I am opposed to the use of credit reports for non related uses such as employment. " Thank God. I was beginning to think the whole world had gone insane. Anyone thinking that it's innocent childs play to allow others to have access to our private records should read this board. I have never seen so much moral relativism in my life. Criminal backgrounds I can see to a point - because at least this has a direct correlation to the candidates employment, and I still feel there should be justification and tighter controls there. But credit checks? That is some "big-brother" type stuff going on there. Employers seem to feel entitled to know every inch of a persons life when all they really need to know is whether the candidate is competent and reliable enough to fill that position.

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

Who are all these greedy investors? "Why isn't my retirement account growing fast enough?" "1% dividend? Is that all?" "You need to do something to make your stock worth more money." The pressure comes from the big investors: the insurance funds, the retirement funds. Who is creating that pressure? We are. That greed comes from us. To paraphrase Queen, we want it all, and we want it now. No amount of cracking down on businesses, large or small, is going to change that until we learn to once again think beyond the moment (or the next quarterly statement).

rocky49152
rocky49152

1) You had to KNOW to call the MRO to validate our prescription. The average Joe looking for a job isn't going to have the awareness to follow up on that. 2) Where is the explanation to need to know ANYTHING about a person's credit history? I didn't see that in there. Why is it of concern to a potential employer that I've been in debt for 7 years, regardless of my employment status?

zentross
zentross

This is a discussion that should probably warrant it's own discussion thread. I have witnessed the marginalization of IT skills for some time while corporate heads develop strategy and hand down edicts with little thought to the technical feasibility of their decisions. Other than pay, a pet peeve of mine is in job descriptions and redrafting job duties to manage shrinking human resources in a period of economic uncertainty, tight budgets, and frequent restructuring. I will submit the example of restructuring responsibilities for a photographer who takes digital photographs for the purpose of the organization to publish up to their web sites as well as in print getting drafted to maintain the organization's web content. Now, if this is handled solely through a content management system and content is the *only* web maintenance activity required, this is not really a concern. The issue becomes more tangled when the definition of content is extended to scripts, flash, and streaming. An individual who has been trained in a vary distinct professional discipline is not thrown into a pit of chaos to which he is likely not adequately trained and would take months if not years to become so. Where does this type of plug-n-pray mindset come from? Have you ever heard a comment similar to "My neighbor's kid is pretty good at computers. I bet he can fix it." uttered in your presence? Certifications show that someone has taken the time, expense, and initiative to study for a test. Real world experience teaches working creatively under pressure, tight budgets, and possibly without a safety net. If an organization were to form that IT workers paid dues for benefits such as a lobby in the state and federal government for the concerns of IT and discounts to training resources for staying current, I would be very interested.

wolfshades
wolfshades

You said "I strongly believe that each case should be handled individually. The nature of the crime /charge, the age of the individual at the time the arrest was made, obviously the nature of the crime, and is this person a habitual offender?" The only problem with your suggestion is that there are hordes of unemployed people applying for any particular position. Do you honestly think any company is going to take the time to sift through their findings to determine the severity of the prospective employee's "crimes"? Not very likely. It's pretty much a binary deal: do they have a criminal record? Is their credit rating above a certain threshold. If yes, then burn their application. So...if you've been divorced and have had to pay alimony, your credit has tanked and this means you can't even get a better paying job to pay the ex-wife. "Bad things happen to good people" is not an adequate response.

ania_dublin
ania_dublin

Why should they "carefully study" your credit record? Why do you think the companies policies is about treating anybody humanly? As soon as they get enough applicants, and they do, they will not care about anything. I think only HR themselves could answer all your questions in this regard. Nobody else knows how they work. Nobody can tell if its legal what they do whatsoever.

ania_dublin
ania_dublin

His error was being a pacifist. Instead of letting them crucify himself he should have started a real social revolution. Wow.

ania_dublin
ania_dublin

Show me a corporation which doesn't do it. All of them do. Of course they are aware how humiliating it is. This is just to force you to see yourself as a number from the first day on. They must have some good psychologists telling them how to, step my step, make people agree to low wages, big-brother at work place. ridiculous policies etc.

vince
vince

You might want to review how much insight and control your Health Inurance provider has over your realtionship with your doctor. They run the show, not yor doctor. But I do agree with your desire in that area.

dustinmatia
dustinmatia

I am not disputing your arguement, in fact I agree with you. The companies large and investors alike are owned and run by people. When these people step and run/invest in these companies. They separate themselves from the pack so to speak. That being said they put themselves in the limelight and collect more money than most. More often than not, they collect money and on the flip side, they lose just as much money or more. When their greed comes into play, they push the limits of the company's resources. Pretty much gamble, hence cut labor when they lose the bet. In my reply "I agree!!" I stated this in the first place. Keep i n mind, I really don't delight in airing my own opinion. I'm just tired of the economic climate gettting just as bad as the actual geographic climate. So my question is when will gov, large corp's, small corps, and the biggest pool of greed the rest of the people, cut down on their consumption? I mean do we all need to lose our jobs to realize we don't all need $150 cable bills, and $200 cell phone bills? I can keep going on and on, hopefully by now if you understand my point. If you don't, you're one reason out of many why we are in the situation we are all in.

g-man_863
g-man_863

Finding out if a prospective employee is "in debt" isn't the issue. The credit report shows how someone MANAGES their money. Assume you're hiring for a bookkeeping, accounts payable or office manager position. While a credit report isn't a crystal ball, it can raise legitimate red flags such as: * Multiple NSF (Bounced) checks: Unable to keep tabs on financial data. * Non-medical late payments or written-off accounts: Cannot manage basic personal finances, tendency to overspend against available budget. * Tax liens: see reasons above. I agree credit reports should only be used for positions that involve money management and that legitimate medical and unemployment issues should be considered when analyzing the data. P.S. Being "in debt" can be a POSITIVE factor in credit reporting. If you have a mortgage or car loan and pay on time, it usually raises your overall score.

C.barbosa
C.barbosa

Hello, I agree with you on certain points, Unfortunately there are too many people out of work and yes most employers will toss out and application when they see a conviction on it, that is too bad! We all hope that some day our economy will stabilize and most people can go back to work. When I say "bad things happen to good people" does that mean a person should be crucified for the rest of their live for a mistake he/she has made in the past? That certainly is an unfair assumption. As you mentioned, a "divorce" can ruin a persons credit, does that mean that these are bad people? No it doesn't, but something bad happened to them. People change, things happen, Should that be held against them for a potential job opportunity? I don't think so. Same goes for a convicted felon, if they've made a mistake in the past, does that make this person a bad person, Most of the time I'd say no. Life is a long lesson, we live and learn from our mistakes and in my opinion we all deserve a second chance. I suppose its how you look at life every one has their own personal opinion.

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

Or your roll of toilet paper? Or your meatball? Shouldn't people be held accountable for their actions?

rocky49152
rocky49152

You're making a judgement about a person's ability to manage money based on how they manage their personal finances, but this is what college transcripts and testing is for. There are lots of other criteria that can tell you if a person is competent enough to manage accounts other than their credit report, which may be misleading anyhow - due to their employment situation when they come to sit in your office. If you're hiring someone to manage money based on personal information - that implies that there is no other training they have to for you to refer to. Any employer using that kind of criteria in hiring deserves the poor employees they are likely to attract.

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

I've worked for some good ones and some bad ones. Based on available information, these are some pretty bad bosses, but I'm also fairly certain we don't have all the information. Nothing is ever black and white...except old movies.

ania_dublin
ania_dublin

Oh I'm not saying i am surprised. Instead I would like to say what exactly those bosses deserve, only I don't want to get banned here.

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

Apparently, yes. Given the difficulty in a normal economic climate of laying off workers who simply are no longer needed because the business needs have changed, why are you surprised that in hard economic times, businesses are taking advantage of a chance to reduce their workforce without having to jump through hoops?

ania_dublin
ania_dublin

The examples were quite clear: 1. the roll of toilet paper never left company's premises. Was just taken to another place and used according to employees' needs. The employee was sucked because of this action nevertheless. 2. the meatball was going to be thrown away anyway.. 3. if a roll of toilet paper is more valuable to you then the employee, why do you employ humans in the first place? Employ chimpanzees or put yourself to hard work instead.

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