Despite proof that a person’s credit history isn’t an accurate predictor of their job performance, companies still do it. This is unfortunate for candidates whose recent payment history isn’t so great because they–I don’t know–need a better job, or don’t have one to begin with. The good news for job hunters is that the number of employers performing these checks is falling.
The Society for Human Resource Management periodically checks into these things, and their latest survey indicates that most organizations–53% of employers surveyed–don’t perform credit checks on any of their applicants. Of those who do, 80% have found at least one negative item on that report and hired the candidate anyway. Yay!
Why do they still perform the checks? The most common reason is to prevent theft or embezzlement, and some employers also check credit to reduce their liability in case they’re accused of negligent hiring, and to evaluate the overall trustworthiness of a candidate. SOme credit checks are also part of state-mandated full background checks on people in some positions.