The debate over whether a job candidate’s credit history should influence an employer’s decision will probably go on for years to come. Some may argue that it is unfair and others will claim that it is an invasion of privacy. But like it or not, it is a tool which more employers will consider using in order to judge an applicant’s honesty, credibility and even reliability.
A good credit record is important if you are applying for a job in the financial sector for a number of reasons. However, these days this is being applied across the board for all sectors of industry.
It is not about whether you are blacklisted or not that will make the difference. Every reasonable employer will know that any person can undergo periods of financial strain but the focus is on whether employees are making efforts to repay their debts and not accrue any further debt.
Failure to service your debt may occur when you lose your job or experience some other mishap in life and this is usually indicated in either in your CV or you may state so during the interview. However if you were gainfully employed yet still managed to slip into debt then it is not going to reflect positively on you.
Why Do Employers Look At Your Credit History?
When we take on a credit agreement, we agree to pay back the creditor for the goods which we are acquiring immediately. Yes, the creditor does earn in way of interest but their is also the part of good faith in that you agree to service your credit as agreed upon. Failure to do so shows a lack of respect for the established institutions and this obviously also shows a lack on responsibility, reliability and at times even honesty.
This is not to say that every person with a poor credit record is an unreliable worker. But in a country where labour strikes and disputes, poor work ethic and even crime in the workplace is not uncommon, employers have to utilize some method or the other to try to weed out those applicants who may be a liability to the company.
Every person should routinely check their credit record. You are allowed to view your records at no charge once a year but you can pay for a report at any time. Prospective job applicants should try to keep their credit records in good standing or deal with any issues as soon as possible.
If you know that your employer will take a look at your credit history and you cannot clean up your record, then you should try to counteract it with character testimonials from community leaders like your pastor or even include a police report clarifying that you have no criminal record. These measures may go some way in undoing the possible impact of your poor credit history on your employer or the recruiter.
If you do have a legitimate reason for our financial woes, other than your lavish spending habits and poor money management, then it may be advisable to explain this at the interview. Be honest, come clean and do not conjure up weird stories. Chances are that the employer may consider all these facts before judging you on your financial affairs.