Tips from Taylor

Taylor discusses background screening

Pre-employment Screening Advice

I've written a lot about employers protecting themselves (and their employees) by doing background checks, and I recently saw an interesting article in the Los Angeles Times about how to prepare for it.

First of all, it's a foregone conclusion that a potential employer is going to do a background check on you. As reported previously, there are some who believe the checks shouldn't be done until after your first interview.

All this to say there is, and will continue to be, a tug-of-war with regard to employee screening and this will only increase the vitality of them. I hesitated to do any commentary on the above mentioned article, but I think it's worth it.

There's nothing wrong with preparing for a background check by an employer - just know that if you're hiding something and your "preparation" is an attempt to hide it further, it's only a matter of time until it will be discovered. This applies not only to credit reports, but to social media profiles as well.

First of all, if you have any concerns pay for a background check yourself. As they get more sophisticated and detailed, it's important to know just what is showing up there. This gives you the opportunity to correct any inaccuracies before you even begin your job hunt.

You could do a search on yourself at a service like,, or

While you're at it, do the same thing with your credit report.

It's common for there to be mistakes on a credit report, which makes it all the more important for you to get copies of your credit reports from all three of the major credit report agencies: Experian, Equifax and TransUnion.

Finally, clean up your social media profile. If you have any potentially damaging information, pictures (i.e. drunk at a party), etc. on your Facebook page or other social media profile, get if off now.

Even if you're not currently looking for a job, this kind of stuff can damage your credibility in your current position.

Whether we like it or not, our social media profiles can potentially harm your employment positions - all it takes is one colleague with access to your Facebook page.

Always remember that if you have to remove a lot of stuff from your Facebook page to begin with, you probably should look at making adjustments to your decision making and use more common sense.

Authored by Dave Jordan.