The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


January 18, 2013

Career Coach Q&A: On Credit Scores and Employment History

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Career Coach columnist Joyce E.A. Russell, an industrial and organizational psychologist, discussed workplace issues in a recent online forum. Excerpts:

Q: I've begun seeing a trend in recent years where employers will look at an applicant's credit report to verify employment history. I have a slight problem — my employment history isn't on my credit report. At all. The reason for that is, I've only ever had one credit card, which I started in college — well before I began accumulating an employment history — and I've had no need to apply for additional lines of credit since then. The upside to that is that I have a credit score most people would kill for; the downside is that my credit report is very bare-bones. With all that in mind, is there a way for me to get my employment history on my credit report without applying for additional lines of credit?

A: Great question and an unusual dilemma you are facing. I am assuming your resume details all of your previous jobs. Have you put down the original name of the firm and its current name (if you know it)? Employers today would not be that surprised by firms that have merged or been acquired. If you can indicate both names of the firm (when you worked there and what it is called now) that might help. You can also list previous supervisors for those jobs (if you want).

Also, do you have any other records substantiating your employment? You did not say how far back you have worked, so maybe you still have old pay stubs or employment letters?

Q: I am a 2007 college graduate with a communications and marketing B.S. degree (3.69 GPA) looking for advice on obtaining a job in the U.S. Since graduation, I have negotiated contracts and competed in professional athletics internationally. How do I parlay this athletic business experience into a career in a "traditional" job role?

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