Are you vexed over your recent late credit card payments that may have tarnished your credit report? Or an outstanding balance of your overdraft which you have overlooked for an entire month surface in a credit screening check and prevent you from landing the job you ever wanted?
Your credit score is seldom used to disqualify job seekers for most positions, and there are recovery steps you can take to rectify any mistakes an employer, recruiter and credit expert may find. Your credit score is dynamic and it can be improved overtime.
Here are three ways on how to build good credit for your career.
- Check your Credit Report
Check your report thoroughly and get it fixed if you do see a mistake or factors that have pulled down your credit score. It is advisable to check at least once every 6 months as the information in your credit report determines your credit score. Take steps to fix it and follow up to ensure it has been resolved.
As most lenders will check your credit file to assess your creditworthiness prior to making a decision, a good credit repayment history will make it easier for you to obtain credit and to qualify for the big ticket items such as taking out a mortgage, planning a wedding, qualifying for a car loan and building up for retirement.
The use of the credit report is one of the risk assessment tools that lenders use to evaluate on your creditworthiness and assess your financial soundness. Lenders will usually look out for repayment status of credit facilities, default records or past bankruptcy. Also, credit-related information on the number of existing credit facilities, new enquiries, outstanding balances and overdue balances in your credit report.
- Establish Credit
A good credit reputation helps you to stand out during your job searches. You can establish credit by getting a secured credit card, which uses a fixed deposit with the issuer as collateral. Credit cards are valuable stepping stones to measure and track your credit and financial progress overtime. As you get to decide how much to charge and pay off every month, a credit card provides insights on how responsible you are with credit and it can boost your scores.
Employers tend to pull credit reports to glean the most accurate identifying details of a candidate to assess their identity, integrity and credentials, as a person’s credit history can be a good indicator of their competency behaviour and financial soundness. This is especially so for candidates that are required to take on financial oversight responsibilities and companies.
- Pay off your Credit Cards
This is a big factor. As your credit report details your credit history and repayment behaviour from various credit providers, it is important to pay your credit card bills on time, all the time. Your credit report is an excellent data source for employers to review potential candidates. An individual that has a significant level of personal debts could be more focused on his or her personal financial issues than job responsibilities, or consistently late in making payments could be an indicative factor of a lack of responsibility that could ultimately impact job performance. These issues can skew the real picture of a person’s financial prowess. It is thus crucial to avoid late payments at all costs.
Paying your credit balance in full every month helps to maintain your credit score and build a good credit history. This will enable you to use credit to work harder for you, rather than becoming a slave to credit. A credit report completely free from late payments and derogatory marks can indicate to an employer that you have the financial maturity and general responsibility it takes to handle the position in question. It is therefore never been more crucial to ensure employees are committed to their jobs.
A solid resume, references and interview skills may be a great booster but overlooking another all–important area – your credit report could disqualify you from a job you are suited for, especially so in the banking and finance industry. A bad credit reputation could be what tilts the scales in another candidate’s direction.
If you have applied for a new credit facility in the last 30 days with any of CBS member banks and financial institutions (view list of CBS members here), you can receive a complimentary copy of your credit report from CBS. Otherwise, you can purchase your report online to understand your credit report better.