IQ PARTNERS’ Ross Campbell was asked by CBC Radio – The Current to speak on the widespread use of credit checks to screen job applicants in Canada. He contributes to the dialogue from the point of view of a Financial Services & Insurance recruiter, an industry that relies heavily on credit checks in employment screening. You can listen to the full broadcast here.
On the Scope of Credit Checks as a Screening Tool
Nearly all of our clients require credit checks before hiring a candidate, and I do work predominantly in the financial services industry and hence, to Bryan [Lyons]’ point, managing significant amounts of money typically requires that type of credit and background check… I’ve been doing this for the past 8 years and it is certainly on the rise, but has been in existence since I started in the business.
On Candidate Rejection Based on Bad Credit
I’ve seen a bit of both; I’ve seen individuals being turned down for jobs, absolutely, and yet I’ve also seen some organizations being more open minded, and providing the opportunity to explain the “why” – why the individual might have had some heartache in their past, whether it be that medical situation or that divorce or bankruptcy that went wrong… I would encourage any individual seeking employment who might have bad credit to mention it upfront.
On Using Credit History to Assess Candidate Quality
I don’t know if that’s necessarily the reason why employers do credit checks. I think it’s more about mitigating business risk. Four of our big banks here in Canada are among the top 10 globally… it really seems to be more about ensuring they’re not at risk and there isn’t any kind of liability when it comes to their hiring practices, and ensuring there isn’t any fraud risk. It’s really more a tool in their toolbox [than an assessment technique].
Make sure to listen to the full broadcast for other points of view, including concerns around credit check accuracy, the loose correlation between bad credit and workplace deviance, and the argument that credit checking can lead to employment discrimination.
IQ PARTNERS is an Executive Search & Recruitment firm with offices in Toronto and Vancouver. We help companies hire better, hire less & retain more. We have teams of specialist recruiters in Financial Services & Insurance, Marketing Communications & Media, Emerging Tech & Telecom, Consumer Goods & Retail, B2B & Industrial, Technology, Accounting & Finance, HR & Operations, Mining & Engineering, Life Sciences, and Construction, Property & Real Estate. IQ PARTNERS has its head office in Toronto and operates internationally via Aravati Global Search Network. Click here to view current job openings and to register with us.