Behind the Resume: The Crucial Importance of Checking Work History When Hiring


The importance of checking work history when hiring cannot be overstated. A prospective employee’s work history is a critical aspect of the hiring process that provides valuable insights into their qualifications, reliability and potential for success within your organisation.

In this blog post, we will explore the reasons why verifying work history is crucial for employers.

Verification of Qualifications

One of the primary reasons to check work history is to verify the accuracy of the qualifications and skills claimed by the candidate. By confirming their past positions and responsibilities, you can ensure that the candidate possesses the skills and experience necessary for the role. This step helps in hiring individuals who are truly capable of performing the job effectively.

Assessment of Reliability

Consistency and reliability are highly valued traits in an employee. By examining a candidate’s work history, you can gauge their ability to commit to long-term employment. Frequent job changes or unexplained gaps can be red flags that warrant further investigation. A consistent work history typically indicates a candidate’s dedication and reliability.

Understanding Career Progression

A candidate’s work history provides a comprehensive view of their career progression. It allows you to assess if the individual has steadily advanced in their field, taking on greater responsibilities and challenges over time. A candidate who has demonstrated upward mobility in their previous roles is more likely to contribute positively to your organisation.

Identifying Red Flags

Inconsistent or unverifiable work history can raise red flags. It may indicate a candidate’s tendency to exaggerate or fabricate information on their resume, which could be a sign of dishonesty. Such candidates may not be trustworthy employees, potentially leading to issues down the line.

Conducting DBS checks alongside work history checks can also ensure there are no other red flags in an individual’s criminal history (if they have any).

Cultural Fit

Every organisation has its unique culture and values. By examining a candidate’s work history, you can assess whether they have experience working in environments similar to your company’s culture. This helps ensure that new hires are more likely to adapt and thrive within your organisation.

References and Recommendations

When checking a candidate’s work history, employers have the opportunity to contact references provided by the candidate. These references can offer valuable insights into the individual’s work ethic, skills and performance. Recommendations from past employers or colleagues can be instrumental in making an informed hiring decision.

Legal and Regulatory Compliance

Some industries have strict regulations and requirements for specific roles. Verifying a candidate’s work history can help ensure that you are in compliance with these regulations, reducing the risk of legal complications in the future.

Minimising Turnover

High employee turnover can be costly and disruptive to any business. By carefully reviewing work history, you can reduce the likelihood of hiring employees who are likely to leave the company shortly after joining. This helps maintain stability within your workforce and minimises the need for frequent recruitment efforts.

Protecting Reputation

Hiring individuals with questionable work histories can damage your company’s reputation. If a new hire proves to be unreliable, unqualified or unethical, it can negatively impact your business’s image and trustworthiness in the eyes of customers, clients and partners.


Checking work history when hiring is an essential step in the recruitment process. It ensures that you are making informed decisions, mitigating potential risks and selecting candidates who are not only qualified but also a good fit for your organisation. A comprehensive evaluation of a candidate’s work history is an investment in the future success and stability of your company.