Jobs That Hire With A Criminal Background
If you’ve been convicted of a crime before, you may find it hard to get hired by a company. Your past criminal record can prevent you from being considered for certain employment opportunities, but it’s not the end of the road.
Certain jobs are best suited for individuals with a criminal record. Here are the several employment opportunities that hire with a criminal background, as well as tips for successfully completing the job application and interview process.
Jobs Openings For Prior Offenders
A criminal background should not disqualify you from finding a job with a good wage. People make mistakes and deserve a second chance. While not all professions are open to hiring individuals with a previous criminal history, there are more than a few jobs that will. This is important to keep in mind if you start to feel overcome by disappointment and frustration during your search for employment.
Related Article: Finding a Job in the United States
Remember that the employer hiring may ask you about your criminal history and what it entails, but that shouldn’t prevent you from being brought on for one of the following jobs. If your job hunt is just getting started, here are six occupations that hire individuals with a criminal background:
- Welding – This field starts with low pay but affords individuals with a previous criminal history the opportunity to climb the ladder and earn more money over time.
- Electricians – This is job is relatively easy for past offenders to get hired in. Oftentimes, electric companies will hire individuals right away and provide on-the-job training.
- Freelance writing – Do words come easily to you? You can earn a living from behind your computer screen as a freelance writer. Many different companies hire for this role.
- HVAC Technician – Like electrical work, the responsibilities of an HVAC technician can be learned during the training process. This blue-collar job can be profitable and offer professional advancement if performed well.
- Carpenter – If you are good at woodworking and creating items with your hands, consider a job as a carpenter. Carpenter jobs can be found with local building companies or you can apply for a construction job with a national firm.
- Military – If you are meet the age requirements and criminal background, joining the U.S. military could be a good option for you. A specific skill set is not required to apply. Talk to a military recruiter to learn more.
Companies That Hire Past Criminals
When you are released from jail, it may feel impossible to get a job anywhere. Rest assured, getting hired after serving time is not as unmanageable as it may feel. Many well-known companies are identified as businesses that hire individuals with a previous criminal history.
Doing so helps to give former criminals a second chance to be successful in life. Here are some of the top companies that hire individuals with a criminal background:
- American Airlines
- Best Buy
- The Coca-Cola Company
- CVS Health
- Koch Industries
- Perdue Farms
- Prudential Financial
- Tyson Foods
- Under Armour
Small businesses within local communities may also hire individuals with criminal backgrounds. Check with local shops and stores to find out for sure.
Resume Tips For Prior Criminals
Whether you’ve served time in jail or prison for a few months or several years, you will need to rework your resume to launch yourself back into the workforce. Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you craft your resume when you have a previous criminal history:
- Don’t list your work history in chronological order. If you just got out of jail, there is probably a recent employment gap on your resume. Instead of focusing on the lack of employment during your incarceration, highlight your previous work history up top and don’t worry about whether or not your jobs appear in sequential order. Put the most relevant work history first.
- Ask for help. Hire a professional resume writer or seek help from a local nonprofit group. These organizations and individuals can help give your resume a professional touch that will bring your resume up to current industry standards. This is often done for free or at a reduced price.
- Focus on your strengths. Your resume is a place for you to show your on-the-job skillset. While most employers will ask if you’ve ever been convicted of a crime, it does not need to be listed out in detail on your resume. Show off your strengths.
- Include work experience during incarceration. If you had a job while serving time or perhaps you volunteered while incarcerated, it’s OK to list this information on your resume. Be careful and sensitive as to how you present the information. Avoid negative wording and get creative with your involvement.
Interview Tips For Past Criminals
Now that you have identified a job field you’d like to apply for and you’ve got your resume ready to go, it’s time to prep for your possible interview. It can be nervewracking to participate in a job interview, especially if it has been a while since you’ve spoken to a potential employer on the phone or in person. Here are the best interview tips for individuals with a criminal background who are looking to get hired:
- Be honest. When asked about your previous criminal history, tell the truth. Employers are looking to hire trustworthy individuals.
- Talk positively about your past. When asked about your criminal background, talk about what you learned from the experience and how you’ve changed. Focus on the job and how that will continue to propel you in the right direction.
- Make good eye contact. You might be nervous but remember to make eye contact with the interviewee when you answer questions. This shows that you are engaged and interested in the job you applied for.
- Remember to smile. Try not to feel bogged down by your previous criminal history. This is your chance at a fresh start. Shake off the feelings of nervousness and despair and remember to smile throughout your interview.
Related Article: Preparing for a Job Interview