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Employment History Check |

Employment History

An Employment History Verification is an important element of any Background Check and is absolutely critical in Pre-Employment Screening.

Employment Verifications
What Is An Employment History Check?

An Employment History Check is an attempt to contact previous employers to verify job title, dates of employment, salary, and eligibility for rehire. The employer should be asked if there are any problems a future employer should be aware of. Employment History Checks are also referred to as Employment Verifications, Work History Checks, Work History Verifications and Verification of Employment.

Where Can I Get My Own Work History?

The Social Security Administration has several reports that may help you reconstruct your own Work History. See Applicant Background Check Resources: Social Security Work History and Earnings History Reports.

What Is Included In An Employment History Report?

The Employment History Background Check Report displays the information the applicant claimed compared to the prior employer's responses. The report will also provide the prior employer's answers to questions such as whether the applicant is eligible for rehire.

Why Employers Check Employment History?

An applicant's employment history is a good indication of future performance. Confirming employment claims helps the prospective employer verify that the applicant fits the job requirements. Employment History Checks are especially important because of the high number of false and exaggerated work history claims (see Background Check Statistics).

Even if a prior employer will only verify minimal information, Employment History Checks are an essential element of a negligent hiring defense (see Protect Against Negligent Hiring Liability).

No National Employment Verification Database

There is NO true national database for employment history verification. Instead, contact is made directly with each employer for verification of employment. Some employers contract with third-party services to handle employment verifications of current and prior employees. These third-party services generally charge a fee.

Free Employment History Check?

Just like there is "No Free Lunch" there is No Free Employment History Check. As previously stated there are no national employment history databases that an employer can access. There are third-party services that offer access to employment history databases. However, these services charge a fee and only have data from employers who have subscribed to the service. In addition, the information provided is limited in scope.

Many employers will verify basic employment history information about prior employees if they have not turned over their employment verification function to a third-party service. Most employers require a signed release from the applicant to verify much more than dates-of-employment. Contacting a prior employer directly requires time and effort to compose an effective (and legal) inquiry and to correctly identify the employer's name, employment verification contact and phone, fax, or mailing address.

Employment History Check Recommendations

A Matter of Fact recommends Employment History Checks for all staff, including full-time employees, part-time employees, temps, contractors, and volunteers. We recommend contacting each previous employer for the last seven years. For a more complete discussion of what we recommend in an Employment Background Check, see, Comprehensive Background Check: The Best Background Check

Most Employment Verifications are available in 1 to 3 business days. However, some employers are difficult to locate and some are very slow in responding. Some employers and third-party party verification services only provide minimal information. So, patience is often required when attempting a full and proper Employment History Check.

For applicants who have worked outside the United States, International Employment History Checks are available, see International Employment Verification.

For more details about A Matter of Fact's Employment History Checks, see Employment and Work History Verification.

Other Employee Verifications

Other Employee Verifications available from A Matter of Fact include:
  • Education Verification
  • Motor Vehicle Report (Drivers License Verification)
  • Professional License Verification - State/Federal
  • E-Verify and Form I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification

Related Resources
  • Applicant Background Check Resources
  • How to Identify Reputable Background Check Companies
  • Verifications Best Practices: What Clients Need to Know for Successful Outsourced Verifications
  • The Best Background Check Service: The Inside Story
  • Summary Of What Can Be In A Background Check
  • Employment Background Check Knowledge Index
  • Background Check Resources for Applicants

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