How To Best Prepare Yourself For A Background Check During CovidPosted on: April 16, 2021 by Gavin Muirhead
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way many companies approach the hiring process, including how they run background checks. If you’re one of the millions of unemployed people searching for a job right now, there are some things you can do to make sure you’re prepared when a potential employer wants to do a background check.
Gather Your Documents and Information
Currently, because so many businesses are closed, it can be difficult for employers to gain access to the kinds of records that usually come with background checks. This has caused some employers to begin asking potential candidates to provide some of that documentation themselves, which they will then verify.
If you can, try to gather up as many official records as you can to use as proof that you’ve done everything your resume says you have so that you’re ready if the hiring manager asks.
Below is a general list of the things you’ll need for the average background check. Some industries may need to do much more extensive background checks, so make sure you ask your potential employer what documents they’ll need from you.
- Some form of identification: This can include driver’s licenses, passports, state-issued IDs, birth certificates, Permanent Resident Cards/Green Cards, etc. Just make sure it includes important information like your full legal name, birthdate, etc. If possible, it’s a good idea to provide at least two separate forms of ID.
- Education information: You’ll need to provide the names of any institution(s) you attended, the dates you were there, your degree, what your major was, and the locations of these schools. It might be helpful if you have a transcript for each of these institutions, too.
- Employment history: You’ll want to be able to tell potential employers the names of any previous companies you’ve worked for, the dates of employment, the company address, phone numbers of relevant supervisors, and your job title(s) at the company. If you can, you might want to locate things like W-2s or pay stubs from those companies to give as proof.
- Your Social Security card and number as a secondary ID.
- Your current address and any previous addresses where you’ve lived.
This is a lot easier to say than to do, especially if you’re unemployed and need to get a job as soon as possible to support yourself and your family. Unfortunately, background checks can take a while even during normal times, when records are relatively easy to access.
During the pandemic, background checks might take even longer because so many places are closed, and gaining access to the necessary information may be difficult or even impossible.
While you’re waiting, though, you can be gathering any documentation you need, like the list from the previous section, or prepare explanations for any potential questions that might come up during the background check process.
Make Sure You’re Ready to Explain Yourself
Background checks are designed to bring to light anything that might be a barrier to employment. However, in most situations, an employer won’t reject you based on a background check alone unless it’s obvious that you blatantly lied about your qualifications.
Most good employers will allow candidates to explain any problems that arise after a background check. So if you already know that some things in your past might make an employer hesitate, you need to be ready to have an honest discussion about them.
Some potential hiccups include a criminal history, long gaps between jobs, or a history of frequent job changes. If any of these apply to you, your potential employer will most likely ask you about them during your next interview. When they do, you should explain the circumstances briefly but honestly, while demonstrating why the employer won’t need to worry about the problem happening again.
Get A Background Check From Affordable Background Checks
At Affordable Background Checks, we believe that background checks are one of the most important parts of the hiring process and that no one should have to forgo doing them because of the price. We pride ourselves on providing high-quality background checks at reasonable prices. If you’d like to learn more about our services, feel free to check out our website today.