Do you have to list every single position on a resume?

mblack444's picture
Rank: Chimp | 12

Hi everyone,

Just have a few questions regarding the background check process.

If given an offer, do you have to list every job you worked at on the pre-employment screening application? There are a few jobs I left off my Resume because they were temp jobs. How do the background check companies check your previous employers? Do they call what is directly listed on your application or do they do a some kind of scan to uncover your previous employers? I don't mind listing the temp-jobs, but would rather not have to if not required by law.

Thank you so much.

Comments (88)

Dec 20, 2013

There is no resume law. Create a resume that matches each position you are applying to.
Lets say you previously have worked at 5 marketing jobs and 5 mechanic jobs. If you were to apply to a marketing position you would include the relevant work experience on your resume.

Google: CV vs Resume

If your potential employer has a question about an item from your background check or not on your background check they will ask you to clarify. Unless you really screwed up, then they will avoid you.

Dec 20, 2013

I received a FT offer with a foreign bank in the US and there was no background check, I am sure this is the exception and not the norm though

Dec 20, 2013

Good resume advice I once got was: "the truth and nothing but the truth"

That is, you shouldn't lie about anything, but no need to disclose everything either. There's nothing in there about the "whole truth."

Dec 20, 2013

I am interviewing with a major financial services firm. I am pretty sure they do a very thorough background check and an FBI criminal background check. I am pretty sure they use Kroll or HireRight to screen candidates. HireRight has done a background check on me before and it was a living nightmare. They uncovered something from 15 years ago on my background, that I thought had been cleared. My offer was rescinded. Was awful, awrful. Needless to say, I just don't want to be any surprises on my 'application". I am pretty sure you can just have relevant history on your "resume." But when it comes to listing previous employers on the actual prescreen application, I think you have to, by law, list all jobs..even temp positions or short lived positions that were not a fit?? Thank you so much.

Dec 20, 2013

IMO the resume is a marketing document - leave out whatever you wish. When you get the offer, and if there is a background check, the agency may ask you for a list of all jobs and internships you have held including salary info and references.

Dec 20, 2013

Yes, thank you. That is what I am planning to do. If given an offer, I will list anything and everything that they ask for, and not omit anything. Will the actual firm though question why I left off jobs on my resume? Surely they understand that people don't report every position on their resume, especially if it was only a few weeks temp-position. But again, if requested, I will list everything on the pre-screen application. I think I will inform HR as well, and be upfront that there were a few jobs I had left on because they were irrelevant (short-term) to the job. I just hope that wouldn't disqualify me? ughhh so sorry, I am obsessing over this:( Thank you so much again.

Dec 20, 2013

Are you referring to a resume, or to online job application forms? I keep a lot off my resume but when I fill out online application forms I tend to add some back in.

Currently: future psychiatrist (med school =P)
Previously: investor relations (top consulting firm), M&A consulting (Big 4), M&A banking (MM)

Dec 20, 2013

I am referring to the online "pre-screen" application form, after you receive an offer. I am gathering it is ok to leave irrelevant jobs off a resume, but when asked to list jobs on the pre- screen application form, you must include all jobs, irrelevant or not?

Dec 20, 2013

Include all of them, especially if you've earned some form of income from them.

Dec 20, 2013

Yes, I will include all of them on the application form if given an offer. Thank you. I just was worried the company may question why I didn't include them on my resume?

Dec 23, 2013

I think that the best policy would be to actually call the company that does the checks, explain your situation and ask for a recommendation on whether you should list these temp jobs or not. Otherwise, I would list them and state that these were temp jobs.

Dec 23, 2013

On a resume you can list whatever you want. On a job application I would list any job that was taxed and for which there is a government record such as on a W2. I don't know exactly how the background check process works but I do know it is usually outsourced and I'm pretty sure the people doing it lean towards the incompetent/apathetic side.

Apr 22, 2014

I have being a tutor on my resume. It was organized by my high school through the National Honor Society. It was no paid and I have very few contacts, besides a select group of friends and teammates that I tutored. Will I have to get references for this?

Apr 22, 2014
fifasoccerpro93:

I have being a tutor on my resume. It was organized by my high school through the National Honor Society. It was no paid and I have very few contacts, besides a select group of friends and teammates that I tutored. Will I have to get references for this?

1) Were you paid?
2) Were you on W-2, W-9 or similar?
If no, then... no, you don't need references because as far as the IRS is concerned you were not employed :P

Currently: future psychiatrist (med school =P)
Previously: investor relations (top consulting firm), M&A consulting (Big 4), M&A banking (MM)

Apr 22, 2014

No, I didn't get paid. It was more like an extra-curricular. I only listed as a volunteer experience because I also tutored friends, teammates, and family. So you're saying I don't have to worry about having this verified?

Apr 23, 2014

Not sure how senior you are, but if you have 5 years of work experience you should likely list them.
They check by cross referencing what you said with the HR team at your old firm, NOT your old boss.

Whether or not it is meaningful is subjective. If its not meaningful dont address it in the interview...that is very different that listing it on an application

Anyways, If you were on the payroll they can verify dates of employment pretty easily

Apr 23, 2014
theworks9:

Not sure how senior you are, but if you have 5 years of work experience you should likely list them.
They check by cross referencing what you said with the HR team at your old firm, NOT your old boss.

Whether or not it is meaningful is subjective. If its not meaningful dont address it in the interview...that is very different that listing it on an application

Anyways, If you were on the payroll they can verify dates of employment pretty easily

I am actually an undergraduate. Can I not be bother with those work experience that are not stated in my CV?
You see, if I declare them, then there will be more issues e.g. the agency have to check records
There is no criminal record or anything that I wanna hide, but just that I don't want to deal with any hassle, seeing that these past experience are really not relevant to the job and just did for fun.

Apr 23, 2014

As an addition to the OP's question, if I have a research position on my resume that could be classified as either work experience or extracurricular, would it be wiser to classify it as extracurricular just so it doesn't get examined too closely? For what it's worth, I have nothing to hide, but I'm just an extremely paranoid person lol.

Apr 23, 2014

im guessing you're gunning for an IB position. If you think you can reasonably fit it in and it wouldn't look out of the ordinary then yea. it really depends on what kind of past work experience you've had and the overall strength of your resume. IT and Financial accounting tutor looks great for someone as a freshman. but if you're a junior or anything above i guess just keep the financial accounting tutor thing bc it should'nt take that much space.

Apr 23, 2014

Right now I'm a sophomore in a middle office credit risk position. That's about the only relevant experience I have so was planning on padding out the work experience section with these items.

I guess I will post a full resume later.

Apr 23, 2014

Personal issues aside, you're asking about listing two weeks of training. I think you know the answer.

Apr 23, 2014

What was the personal experience?

Apr 23, 2014

Best not to. However, as long as your "personal issues" do not make you look bad, you could always bring it up during an interview

Apr 23, 2014
noobstar:

Best not to. However, as long as your "personal issues" do not make you look bad, you could always bring it up during an interview

Best not to get into any situation you can't control, or at least dictate, the outcome of. Besides, I'm sure there is something else he/she could put instead.

Apr 23, 2014

NO

Apr 23, 2014

for sure don't

Apr 23, 2014

Why do you need to quit the current job? Hard to give a definite answer without knowing that.

Apr 23, 2014
copecre:

Why do you need to quit the current job? Hard to give a definite answer without knowing that.

Because I'm trying to get into IB

Apr 23, 2014

You don't have to list any job. There is no resume Law, firms can't review your tax return.

Apr 23, 2014

anyone else have any thoughts on this?

Apr 23, 2014

You have to leave due to Visa issues? Are you on OPT which is running out next year? If so, not sure that making the jump locally would be great for you unless they can place you somewhere else.

You can leave it out, unlikely that background checks would pick it up - but can never say. You can always put "2014-2015" on your resume later on.

Apr 23, 2014

You don't have to include anything you don't want to on your resume. You don't have to put your school or work experience, or anything. You just CAN'T lie or overly fluff it. Don't extend employment dates to try and hide it.

"It is better to have a friendship based on business, than a business based on friendship." - Rockefeller.

"Live fast, die hard. Leave a good looking body." - Navy SEAL

Apr 23, 2014

It's important for your to current job to take up most of the space for the reasons you already give. But I would definitely put the asset man. job down because it adds color to your resume - it will explain the time gap and the more experience the better. Recruiters know people change jobs all the time and you can always explain it.

Chase Us, Break In
http://chasingconsultantsbreakingbankers.blogspot....

Apr 23, 2014

I am in complete agreement on this one. State it!

Apr 23, 2014

You should absolutely include the W/E for two reasons:

1) It acknowledges that you have BB experience and that you are employable in that type of environment
2) It is easily explained away by stating that the offer rate was low and that you still received very positive feedback

Does it suck that you were not asked back? Yes, but it is not the end of the world and in no means a significant deterrent from a future opportunity. Good luck.

Apr 23, 2014

Agree with JBS, you should absolutely include it. Keep in mind that you're competing against juniors at target schools with great extracurrics and great GPAs. The one thing that most of these kids won't have is relevant finance or banking work experience. You have that.

Also, you're just trying to get in for the interview. You can explain why you didn't get an offer or prove that you should have received an offer, but absolutely put it on your resume to secure those interviews.

Apr 23, 2014

Yeah, definitely list your experience. They might not know you were not offered to return, especially since you are applying to another division. They might assume you turned down a potential offer to apply for this new division.

Apr 23, 2014

agree with the above - also, if you had a good relationship with your former supervisors, you may be able to get them to give you a rec which would def help.

is there a reason why you didnt get an offer to come back?

Apr 23, 2014

Thanks! Good to know...

Officially I was told I couldn't come back because of "hiring needs"

Unofficially, the analysts I worked with told me a pretty senior Vice President we worked with exclusivly thought I was "fake" (wtf, am I supposed to tell you that I think you suck??). He was actually let go from the bank in Oct though

Apr 23, 2014

"Unofficially, the analysts I worked with told me a pretty senior Vice President we worked with exclusivly thought I was "fake" (wtf, am I supposed to tell you that I think you suck??). He was actually let go from the bank in Oct though."

This furthers the case for leaving it on your resume. If asked, provide the interviewer with the contact information of someone you know who will vouch for you. Good luck.

Apr 23, 2014

"Unofficially, the analysts I worked with told me a pretty senior Vice President we worked with exclusivly thought I was "fake" (wtf, am I supposed to tell you that I think you suck??). He was actually let go from the bank in Oct though."

This furthers the case for leaving it on your resume. If asked, provide the interviewer with the contact information of someone you know who will vouch for you. Good luck.

Apr 23, 2014

"Unofficially, the analysts I worked with told me a pretty senior Vice President we worked with exclusivly thought I was "fake" (wtf, am I supposed to tell you that I think you suck??). He was actually let go from the bank in Oct though."

This furthers the case for leaving it on your resume. If asked, provide the interviewer with the contact information of someone you know who will vouch for you. Good luck.

Apr 23, 2014

I'd say sophomores in banks are a reasonably scarce enough group that not being asked to come back for further years is not an auto-ding, or even close enough to a dent that you shouldn't list it. All the sophomores I have known in summer positions have sorta made it themselves, in unstructured/nontraditonal ways such that being asked back and good performance are not necessarily correlated.

Apr 23, 2014

Its not the fact that you are leaving out a job. Its the fact that you were suspended from school for a year and they didn't know that when they made the offer.

Whether thats a problem, I couldn't tell you, but that part is more serious than the job.

Apr 23, 2014

I understand that could be a concern. But I don't know that its my responsibility to bring it up to them during an interview. I fully intend to disclose it and at not point did I lie. If anyone had ever asked about it during the interview process, I would've openly discussed it. Plus, the suspension was not anything that would call into question my ability to do the job.

Apr 23, 2014

you are fine.

leave that sucker out.

Apr 23, 2014

Its the fact that you were suspended from school for a year and they didn't know that when they made the offer.

This poster doesn't know what he's talking about. Being suspended from school is not a problem. It's not something you have to disclose in the interview process, just as I didn't disclose my activities during my freshman summer (getting drunk and partying with friends).

You're also not obligated to list every job you held. It's your choice as to how you present yourself, and if you feel like leaving a job off the resume, that's your decision. I had a job that I left off, because I didn't feel it was relevant. As long as you didn't outright change dates and cities on your resume, you've got no problem at all. Frankly, I wouldn't disclose either the suspension or the other job.

If they do happen to ask for your transcript at some point, however, you'll probably want a story to go along with that year-long absence in coursework.

Apr 23, 2014

just don't bring it up...why are you trying to shoot yourself in the foot?

Alternative: you could say that you took a semester off for work experience - that might sound very goal-oriented. they will think you believe in delayed gratification = mature.

Apr 23, 2014

But my transcript also says SUSP at the bottom (and obviously there is a year gap if you look at the dates closely). Should I assume that they will notice this and be upfront about it, or should I not mention anything? Would they even care if they did see it - again it doesn't in any way reflect my ability to do the job? I talked to my school about this and they said the only thing employers and business schools call about is to verify graduation, and never about specific issues on the transcript. Thoughts?

Apr 23, 2014

True...I doubt they will look at your transcript in detail (although some do)...so like I said, just don't bring it up then - no point in committing suicide.

Apr 23, 2014

Excuse me?

Apr 23, 2014

Didn't read but took the time to comment...

Apr 23, 2014

What's your problem?

Apr 23, 2014

.

Apr 23, 2014

Puppet

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Apr 23, 2014

You'll only know if you interview him.

The HBS guys have MAD SWAGGER. They frequently wear their class jackets to boston bars, strutting and acting like they own the joint. They just ooze success, confidence, swagger, basically attributes of alpha males.

Apr 23, 2014

I agree with the above poster. Interview him and ask him about internship experience. If he doesn't bring it up at that point he probably has something to hide.

Apr 23, 2014

Interview him. If he blatantly spins himself as a career changer then ding him. Or better yet bring it up if you want to be a dick about it. For all you know he just thinks internships are meant to be left off your resume once you've been working FT for a bit and he'll bring it up himself in his story.

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Apr 23, 2014

Good point above, after college I stopped listing internships even when I was only one job out.

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Apr 23, 2014

Give him a shot. It has only been one year out of college. Yeah maybe he made a mistake during his internship but people learn from mistakes. He could've also left it out since he may think listing internships on a post-grad resumes serve no purpose.

Apr 23, 2014

if chances are not taken/given, most of us would not be in the industry

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Apr 23, 2014

I agree give him a shot.

Apr 23, 2014

Whats wrong about spinning things by omitting the internship? Banking is all about spinning things for your advantage. Nothing wrong in trying to sell yourself as long as you are not directly lying i.e. when asked about the internship denying it.

Apr 23, 2014

Deo et Patriae... is that name in re: to a particular NYC high school perhaps? Hoot hoot

Apr 23, 2014

Pretty interesting to hear that some folks leave out their internships even after being one year out of college.

Yeah, I'd probably think the same way - think the kid was purposely not including the IB summer thinking people might assume he didn't get a return offer. To the above point, I don't think that's necessarily wrong (it's not a lie). So long as if you ask and he's truthful then it's fine.

If I were him I'd leave it in though. Yes, maybe he couldn't convert it to FT offer. But maybe it was just culture/fit. And you can talk to that. Also, them having done banking, and wanting to return means they are aware of the hours and sacrifice (and are not going into it blind), and they are aware of the expectations. At least, as an interviewer, I would see it as a positive provided he tells a good story and appears legit when we test on technicals.

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Apr 23, 2014

What kind of bad experience?

Apr 23, 2014

If you want to take it off, take it off. I think if you put it on there and give an honest (not fluffed) description of what you did, no one is going to call your former bosses about it.

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Apr 23, 2014

you should leave it in. government positions are legitimately looked very highly upon in banks

Apr 23, 2014
Apr 23, 2014