If you’re hiring employees for positions that require them to manage your company’s assets or work with money, you should consider completing an employment credit check as part of your employment screening process. Pulling a credit report for employees allows you to cross-check information needed to verify an applicant’s identity and their previous places of employment and salaries. It also helps you determine whether the person is financially responsible, which may help you determine whether a person is right for the job.
Before you request a credit check on a potential employee, you’re required to give the prospective employee a conditional offer of employment in writing. Basically, your conditional offer of employment offers the applicant the job as long as the information on their credit report meets your company’s expectations. This is extremely important because some of the information on a person’s credit report is data safeguarded by provincial or federal discrimination laws. So providing the written conditional offer of employment protects your company from legal liability issues. Also, the potential employee needs to consent to the credit check before you can start your inquiry.
Two major credit bureaus serve Canada — Equifax and Transunion. Equifax has a verification exchange for employers that lets you process an employment credit check in as little as 24 hours. As long as the potential employee provides consent for a credit check, you can also request their credit history through the verification exchange.
With Transunion, the process is slightly different. The company solely offers employment credit reports, which you can request through their website. They don’t offer separate income and employment verification reports. But credit reports do include previous income and employment information, so you can use it to cross-check the information you have on file for the applicant.
Employment credit inquiries are helpful tools during the hiring process, but it’s important to remember an applicant’s credit history shouldn’t be your only consideration. If you find something concerning on a person’s credit report, you should discuss the issue with the applicant to determine the cause of any negative information found.