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How to find your employment history

How to find your employment history
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  You may need to find your employment history for a number of reasons – completing an application for a new apartment, updating your resume, or filling out job applications.  If you have been working for many years and for multiple employers, this can be tedious and time consuming.  Do not use hiring deadlines, as landlords or potential employers may contact references to verify accuracy.  You have several strategies available to find your career history.

  In some cases, the hiring manager might only be interested in where you have worked for the past few years.  In other cases, the company may want a broad employment history dating back many years.

  A work history report, also known as your complete employment history, is a document detailing all of your past work.  When applying for a new job, a potential employer may request a work history report to learn more about your previous job experience and how it relates to the position.  You may also need a full employment history report if you apply for benefits or a license in your industry.  In this article, we explain how to find your employment history.

  If you’ve been working for a long time, this may seem like a daunting task, but it’s something you can recreate on your own even if you don’t remember exactly when you worked on each job.  Once the details are confirmed, you can track subsequent situations moving forward, so it will be easier to provide the information to potential employers.

  How to find your employment history

  It can be difficult, especially if you have a lot of jobs, to keep track of your personal career history.  However, when you apply for new jobs, many companies want an accurate record of where and when you worked, especially when conducting employment background checks.  When you apply for unemployment benefits, you will need to provide your most recent work history as part of the application process.

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  If you don’t remember the details, and many people haven’t remembered them, you can recreate them with information from the Social Security Administration, the Inland Revenue Service, the state’s tax or unemployment department, and previous employers.  It is important to provide potential employers with accurate information.  Don’t guess where and when you worked, because if you are wrong, employers will want to know why.

  Getting a detailed work history report is helpful if you are asked to provide the names of previous employers, dates you worked for employers, and contact information for the employer.  You may be asked for this information when:

  • Fill out the job application.
  • Apply for a student loan.
  • Take out a mortgage.
  • Involved in a personal injury case.
  • Obtaining a special pension plan.

  If you do not want to gather this information together on your own by checking with past employers or reviewing your tax returns, you can request a report with the required information.  What you don’t want to do is guess your employment history and wages, as this might reflect poorly on you.

  How to find your employment history using your Social Security number

  It is possible to obtain advance employment information without using your Social Security Number (SSN).  Your former employer can provide you with the information you mentioned in your application when you applied for a job.  Your local manpower agency can give you a list of the quarterly wage reports that previous employers have given you.  Depending on your needs, the information provided by these sources may or may not be sufficient.  Often a Social Security number is required to obtain comprehensive information on past employment.

·         Find records at the Social Security Administration

  If you are blank in the details of some of your jobs, the Social Security Administration can help you.  Simply fill out and submit an application form for information on Social Security earnings.  In return, you will receive detailed information about your work history including employment dates, employer names and addresses, and earnings.  There is a fee of $ 115 to receive this detailed employer list.

·         Find records at your state unemployment office

  A free option might be getting records from your state’s unemployment office.  If you’ve moved around a lot, this can be difficult, but if most of your work is in one or two states, you can request these records and rebuild your employment history.  Check with your state to see what is available.

·         Use your tax forms

  If you are good at keeping tax records you should have your own W2 forms, which contain information about past employers.  But if you still can’t find the dates of your previous work, try calling the human resources office in each company you worked for and request specific months and years.

·         Credit report

  Credit reporting agencies do not necessarily keep records of an individual’s employment history.  However, you might be able to get some information about your past work history from this source.  If you provided information about a business owner when you applied for a loan, credit card, or other credit-related inquiry, your credit report may contain those details.  You can receive one free credit report annually from all three credit reporting agencies – Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.  The annual credit report website is the only option the Federal Trade Commission allows.

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  You can also contact the major credit reporting agencies yourself to get the information you need.  Reports from these agencies will likely include your most recent job verification date or the date of your most recent employment status report as part of your credit history.

·         IRS records

  Another option to obtain your complete employment record is to request your IRS records.  Whether you work as a full-time or part-time employee, your employer must provide you with a Form W-2 at the end of each tax year.  This form includes all of the income you have earned with this employer, plus the amount withheld for taxes.  Form W-2 also includes the name and address of the employer, and your employment dates.

  If you have copies of your tax returns from previous years, you can use this information to find and report your employment history.  The W-2s that you received will determine where you worked and how much tax you paid during a particular tax year.  If you do not have copies, you may be able to find the information online if you use online tax preparation services.  Some of these companies provide copies of your tax returns for free, while others charge a fee.

  The IRS also has information on file from the date you filed your tax returns each year.  Visit the IRS website and download Form 4506. This form allows you to request copies of your previous tax returns, which will include the name and address of your previous employers, along with the time you worked for each company.  Form 4506 can be downloaded and filed digitally or printed and filled out manually.  Include any previous home addresses if you lived elsewhere when you filed your tax returns, along with the years of tax returns you need.

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·         Online records

  You can also search online for information about your past work experience.  You may have an online profile on a communication website that includes your previous resume or details about your recent jobs.  You can also use a search engine to search for your full name to see if this will bring up any information about your past jobs.

  Look for documents that may display your work history, as well as those that can remind you of your previous positions you held.  Even blogs, social media profiles, and other forms of online presence may include details about your business.  Check your email inbox to see if you have received any emails from co-workers in previous positions.  You may also want to search for work-related keywords to find the emails you have sent or received regarding past employers.

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