If Youre Fired, Will Past Employers Keep Your Secret?
Despite what some job seekers think, it is not illegal for former employers to tell reference checkers that you were fired. They can say anything they want as long as it's true.
But many companies do have policies that limit what they will reveal about past employees.
Is this a good thing or a bad thing?
I was watching an episode of CBS's "60 Minutes" recently (hmmm, maybe I watch too much TV; no wait, this is "research," so it's OK). They had a shocking story about a male hospital worker who is suspected of killing more than 40 patients in several different hospitals during the past decade. He pleaded guilty to two of the murders.
That is very disturbing by itself... but what makes this story so incredibly worse is that his employers unwittingly helped him do it! This guy had been fired many times for a variety of reasons -- hoarding potentially harmful drugs, illegally administering unprescribed treatments, being negligent with patients -- and other alarming actions. He'd even been convicted of something (I can't recall the charge).
Yet he never had a problem getting another job at another hospital. Why? Because his former employers all had policies that prevented them from providing any information about past employees, other than job titles and dates of employment.
Apparently the hospital's lawyers were trying to protect them from lawsuits that could possibly result if something negative (and not proven as fact) was said about a past employee which prevented that employee from obtaining another job.
So even though references were checked, they revealed nothing about this criminal's activities. And he was passed along from one hospital to the next, allegedly killing patients in each one until he was finally caught.
This is a very extreme example of how such personnel policies are, in my opinion, doing more harm than good. This sword cuts both ways, after all. If you've done a truly exceptional job for your past employer, wouldn't you want that employer to be free to confirm your glowing accomplishments during a reference check?
Things are changing, thank goodness. According to the Society of Human Resource Management, employers are conducting more criminal checks than ever before. The need to provide a safe workplace is helping to drive this increase. Plus companies that were once worried about being sued by a former employee over a bad reference are now more concerned about being sued by an employer who wasn't warned about a bad employee!
Regardless of the threat of lawsuits (don't get me started on that), the bottom line for job seekers is that you should not assume your former employer will only provide your dates of employment and job title. If you were fired, it may be revealed. If you were an outstanding employee, it may be revealed.
If you're unsure of what your past employer's policy is, call them and find out. It's a good thing to know!
You may reprint/republish this article if you include my name and a link to this website.
Bonnie Lowe is author of the popular Job Interview Success System and free information-packed ezine, "Career-Life Times." Find those and other powerful career-building resources and tips at her website: http://www.best-interview-strategies.com.
Have You Given Up On Yourself?
Have you given up on yourself? Have you decided to take the easy road and coast for the rest of your life? Have you come to the decision that you have done all you could possibly be expected to do in your life now it is someone else's turn? As you get older you may not be able to run as fast, swim as far, hit the ball as hard or even concentrate as long as you used to but is that the reason to give up? Surely your aim should be to be the best you can at whatever age you are."Navratilova wants to be as good a player as she can possibly be at the age of 47,
just as she wanted to be the best she could possibly be at 19, at 25, at 35".
How To Find Quick, Free, Job Search Resurces
There are many free job search resources available
in any community, large or small. These resources
are available to the aspiring CEO as well as to the
person who wants to make sandwiches.
Dealing With How Would You...? Questions
I'm always preaching about proper preparation prior to interviews. If you research the position and company carefully, you can anticipate likely questions and prepare excellent answers.
Applying for a Job in China
Working in ChinaWorking in China is very common now. Either you are sent to China by your company or you apply for a job to be stationed in China.
Job Interviews: Ill File a Grievance!
I recently went to a retirement party with my husband for one of his co-workers. I worked at this same place six years ago (that's where I met my husband, but that's another story), so I knew most of the people at the party.
Signs of a Healthy Work Environment
There's no denying that a healthy work environment is a top concern for most employees. Review any employee satisfaction survey and you're apt to find this issue among the top five concerns of your staff - sometimes above the issue of pay.
Surprise! Accounting is the Hot New Major
There was a time when accounting was the boring college major that many people regretted signing up for. A constant barrage of numbers, statistics and spreadsheets was none too interesting.
Searching for Jobs Online
Searching for jobs online is easier than ever, but also more confusing than ever. Any Internet user doing a job search online will find that they can choose from hundreds of national employment listing web sites and the numbers can often be staggering.
Adapting To Change In A Changing World
Have you learnt a new skill or improved upon your existing skill in the last six months to one year?According to the world acclaimed management guru and Writer Professor Peter Drucker - "The only skill that will be important in the 21st century is the skill of learning news skills. Everything else will become obsolete over time.
The Hidden Job Market: Real or Imagined?
The hidden job market has been touted as the place to go if you want to find the best jobs. It's been said that this sector of the job market accounts for seventy-five percent of all the job openings out there.
Should You Make A Career Decision Based Upon A Career Quiz?
Q. I'm about to graduate High School and I don't know what I want to be "when I grow up".
How To Conduct A Successful Job Search Campaign
1.Define your objective: Know what kind of work you most enjoy and perform the best.
Fascinating Ways to Make a Living Doing What You Love May Be Closer Than You Think...
You don't have to look very far to find fascinating ways to make a living. Opportunities are literally everywhere? if you're looking, that is.
How to Negotiate The Best Salary and Benefit Packages
Salary and Benefits NegotiationOne of the most difficult aspects of job searching for many people, especially those who are just starting out or who are making a mid-career change, is actually the salary and benefits negotiation aspect. This is true partly because some people are just naturally uncomfortable with negotiation in general and also because they may not feel knowledgeable enough about the job market to be able to effectively negotiate for better pay and benefits.
9 Tips on Creating a Professional Emailed Job Application
With the advent of the Internet, many of us have the opportunity to apply for work through email.However, just because this is the Internet and email is so fast and convenient, that does NOT mean you should give up professionalism and polish!FIRST IMPRESSIONS COUNT.
Reactions to Job Loss; Getting Past the Emotions
Without doubt, job loss through downsizing or redundancy, is a major event for everyone when it happens. Most of us invest so much of ourselves in what we do that job loss can take away our sense of status and belonging, as well as the routine and support that work provides.
Where Will Your IT Staff Come From NOW?
The labor recession is over. During the course of the recession, almost 500,000 IT positions were lost according to publicly collected data and anecdotal information suggests even more.
15 Tips for Writing Winning Resumes
The thought of writing a resume intimidates almost anyone. It's difficult to know where to start or what to include.
What You Should Know About A Medical Billing Specialist
Whether you are a person who is thinking about becoming a medical billing specialist or a company looking for a medical billing specialist, then this article is for you. There are several things that you should be aware of in the medical billing industry and I will walk you through them so that you will have the background information that you need to help you make a decision that will best suit your needs.
You're Ready for a Career Change - Is Your Resume?
You finally did it. You made the decision to leave a career that makes you dread every Monday morning and pursue one that you feel is your true calling.