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Seanna, Hiring Manager
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Experience:  Hiring manager, resume prep, interview skills & job search
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When a possible employer does your background check is there

Resolved Question:

When a possible employer does your background check is there a actual report that lists previous employers... or is the employment background done via contacting the employer by phone or other means?

Also, if you omit a employer can the future employer find out about it?

Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Job
Expert:  Seanna replied 6 years ago.

Angela :

Hello, and thank you for using JustAnswer. There are two ways to conduct a background check (order a report or call references), and the majority of companies do both these days. If you want to tell me the specific position in question though, and the company name, or type of company, I can give you a firmer answer.

However, today, most employers order a background check report for any positions with any level of sensitivity, i.e. working with the public, working with money, working with confidential inforamation. So, in this case, if you omitted an employer, your potential employer could well find out about it.

However, there is no requirement that says you must list *all* work experience on a resume or application, unless the employer's application specifically states that. So, if you just omitted a former employer from a resume, you can easily explain that you only wanted your most relevant job experience on the resume for this position.

Now, if your job doesn't fall into one of these sensitive categories, and especially if you're applying at a smaller company, a formal background check might not be done. Of course, if the employer only calls references, the issue of an omitted job would not come up.

So, I'd need a little more detail to figure out which situation you're most likely in, but what you should take away from this is that unless you were fired from the former position, whether it comes up or not, it can be a non-issue. If you were fired and the potential employer finds out, then you have a little more work to do to convince them you're a worthwhile hire, but it can be done.

Good luck to you and let me know if you have further questions.

Customer :


Customer :


Expert:  Seanna replied 6 years ago.
Hello. I was offline when you posted, but let me know what further question you have and I'll get back to you shortly. Thanks,

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Thanks for gettting back to me.. The reason I ask is becasue my last employer I was "terminated" after seven weeks due to the fact it was still during training and I missed some days do to a illness in the family. Because I was with the company for such a short period of time I was considered to be on probation. I have had a very strong work background with my previous employers. Worked for 3 companies my entire life all about 5 years each. I have never been fired before ever in my life. I had the option to resign instead of being terminated but I refused because (a) I would loose the ability to claim unemployment and (b) just the principal of the matter. I mean honestly, a person's mother goes in for emergency triple by pass surgery you should take that into consideration.. Regardless.. that is why I asked about the omission of a previous (and technically my most recent employer)


Now, why do I ask about being able to check back on a hard copy report if you actually worked for a company or a not.... I worked in finance and most positions were in managerial positions. Due to the current economy finance is probably one of the worst fields to be in these days. There is a open house at a local Kohls.. they are hiring managers for two new stores. They require retail experience which I do not have. Normally I would never say I worked for someone when I didn't. I know I would be upset if someone did it to me when I was a hiring manager. But these days I, like many other people are in survival mode. If I need to fudge here and there to put food on the table I will.


I have looked at my credit report and to my surprise the only jobs listed were with a bank I worked for about 12 years ago. - So my question is when a company does a background check in addition to simply calling previous employers on the phone, is there a specific report that can be obtained with a more percise description of companies I have worked for in the past?


Thanking you in advance,



Expert:  Seanna replied 6 years ago.
Okay, I am so glad you provided all of those details, because they make a significant difference. First of all, the termination is not serious. All you need to say to a potential employer is that you chose to be terminated to care for your critically ill mother. Any reasonable person will not hold that action against you in terms of future employment. However, you must also include the fact that you are now able to fully devote yourself toa new position- i.e. don't make the potential employer worry that they'll have a similar problem as that last employer.

Now, as for Kohl's, absolutely *do not* ever lie on their applications, or on any others. Employers definitely will detect this. Kohl's orders extensive background checks for managment positions, and even regular cashier positions. The reports are extensive, often moreso than a typical credit report (credit reports are notoriously incomplete.) The discrepancy would definitely be noticed and cause you major problems.

This is true not only at Kohl's, but likely at all positions that someone with your experience would apply for. Certain jobs with small companies or little responsibility may be the exceptions to the rule, but large companies run checks as a rule, and *always* run checks where management, cash, customer interaction, interaction with children or any type of confidential information is involved.

I actually worked in retail management for most of a decade, so I can tell you that if that is the path you wish to follow, it's fairly simple to advance into management, once you get your foot in the door in an entry-level position. I was promoted at Nordstrom four times within a two-year period, with no prior retail experience, and many retail companies prefer to promote from within. So, my best advice would be to try for the position you want (and make your management experience seem super-relevant to Kohl's by matching keywords from the job app and learning *everything* about their business model) but be willing to take a lower-ranking job to gain experience and the attention of the district managers who hire store managers. Or you may wish to consider another field: whatever you do, don't risk your reputation by lying or omitting info- it will come back to bite you.

I know that isn't what you wanted to hear, but I want to make sure and be completely forthright with you to save you some grief in the future. I know how hard it is to be unemployed or underemployed, so I do wish you luck in your search.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

So you suggest I put my 7 week gig at geico on my resume? - I mean.. 7 weeks.... I should just not disregard. Put it on the application and wait for them to question it?


Also, another problem I run into, if I take a lower position like a cashier as you suggested, I would only be making a little more than minimum wage, also I would most likely not be offered full time hours becasue the retail stores do not want to pay for medical benefits. - I have no problem working as a cashier.. is it a step down from what I was doing before.. yes its a big step down. But I have no pride and will do what needs to be done... The problem arrises when I am reviewed for another unemployment qualification.


Right now my unemployment is based on my last "real" job. If I work part time they will deduct that amount from the unemployment I receive now, which would be fine but the next time I am evaluated for unemployment insurance my rate would be based on me working for $8 a hour on a part time basis. - Now this is simply something I can't do. This amount money can not support a 36 yr old man.


I hate to say this but it makes more sence for me not to work unless it is a full time gig. I do not like being a burden on society, I have always had a strong work ethic and not accustomed to being so non productive. But when it comes down to it I would be doing myself a serious injustice by accepting such a low paying job that only offers 15 to 20 hours per week. - Do you agree or are you of the opposite opinion?





Expert:  Seanna replied 6 years ago.
Hello. I won't address the morality aspect of the situation, because no one can judge your situation but you and I trust you to do what you think is best.

What I meant about not "fuding" when applying for Kohl's is that if you were to make up experience, it would definitely be discovered- so in other words, you can't get away with padding your resume or application.

However, you still have the option of omitting that 7 week job, and I would omit it. It is easier to explain an omission by saying the brevity of the job and the personal circumstances which required you to leave were not relevant to the job you're currently seeking. So, yes, you can leave it off your resume and application in good conscience.

As for the retail hours, it is true many retailers prefer part time shifts, however, there are always some full time spots available, they may just take a little more looking. For someone with your experience and good work history, you're well within your rights to stipulate that you'd need a full time position. Also, I don't know about your area, but in mine, a retail sales job at a department store pays at least $3 more per hour than the minimum wage, plus you earn comission on top of that, and of course, the full time positions offer health and 401k benefits.

One last thought is about limiting yourself to retail management; are you sure you wouldn't be interested in working at a bank or in some other field? I understand if you've considered all the other options and ruled them out, I just want to make sure of this. Retail managment means working odd hours, decent pay but probably not as good as finance, and typically lots of stress. It can work if you're a huge people person, a strong leader and have a good mix of skills, but it's not for everyone. However, if you're single and don't mind the schedule, it can be fun.

I hope all the info has helped, and if so, please click accept. You'll still be able to ask follow ups as needed. Good luck,

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