How Your Credit Score Can Affect Employment Opportunities

It’s common knowledge that your credit score is a determining factor in securing a loan or mortgage, but did you know that a bad credit score can make your job hunt more difficult?

When an employer does a background check, they may also request that you give them permission to pull your credit report. Although these background checks are not done until the company has decided that they want to hire you, any surprises that may come up, including a poor credit score, are acceptable grounds for refusal to employ.  How do you compare to other hiring candidates? Click here to see your Hiring Risk Index.

Reasons Why a Bad Credit Score Worries Employers

There are several reasons why a bad credit score can make securing a job more difficult.

Firstly, if your job involves managing any kind of finances for the company, it is obvious that poor personal financial management will raise concerns. If you are unable to manage your own salary and expenses, how can a company expect you to manage a multi-million dollar budget?

Furthermore, there is typically a correlation between a credit score and job performance. Often times, failure to manage one aspect of life roles over into other areas. Someone who forgets to pay their bills on time may also show up late to work, forget about meetings, and fail to return customers’ calls.

Sometimes bad credit is the result of difficult life circumstances – such as a foreclosure or divorce. For someone who is still dealing with these issues, it may be difficult to spend the amount of time focusing on work that the employer believes is necessary. If an employer believes that the personal issues that have affected your credit score could also affect your ability to work, they may be hesitant to hire you.

How to Prevent a Bad Credit Score from Costing You a Job

There are several steps you can take to ensure that your credit score doesn’t hurt your chances of getting the job.

The obvious first move is to work hard to keep your credit in good shape. If you maintain a high credit score, then you can be confident that, if anything, your credit score will impress your future employer.

If there was one specific even that majorly influenced your credit score, try to get a note on your credit report that explains the reasoning behind it. Having an explanation on your credit score can tremendously reduce the negative impact.

Finally, ask your future employer about what the background check will entail. IF it does include a credit check, take the initiative to tell your employer what they might find – and offer an explanation. Although it can be awkward to talk about your personal credit score – making an effort to explain things will prevent a potential employer from misunderstanding the impact that your score could have on your work performance.

Take the initiative to monitor your credit score, repair your credit score, and explain discrepancies or issues in your credit score. By taking control of your credit score, you’ll prevent your credit score from controlling your future.

How do you compare to other hiring candidates? Click here to see your Hiring Risk Index.