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Got a Criminal Record? Tips for Finding a Job

resume . / Credit: Job Search Image Shutterstock

While a job candidate with a criminal past might scare off some employers, many are open to giving second chances, new research shows.

A study from CareerBuilder found that more than half of human resource managers have hired someone with a criminal record. Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources at CareerBuilder, said job seekers who have had a brush with the law must be upfront about their past and show that they have learned from their mistakes if they want to improve their chances of getting hired.

"You also want to stay active," Haefner said. "Taking classes, volunteering and tapping into social networks can be good ways to help overcome obstacles associated with job hunting with a criminal past."

Other steps hiring managers recommend for job candidates with a criminal background to make themselves more marketable include:

  • Be willing to work your way up
  • Stay positive
  • Prepare while you’re in prison (take classes, get a degree or vocational training)
  • Don’t apply to jobs where your record would automatically disqualify you
  • Take freelance or temporary assignments
  • Consider joining the military
  • Start your own business
  • Monitor what is said on social media

The study was based on surveys of more than 2,000 hiring managers nationwide.

Follow Chad Brooks on Twitter @cbrooks76 or BusinessNewsDaily @BNDarticles. We're also on Facebook & Google+.

Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based writer and editor with nearly 20 years in media. A 1998 journalism graduate of Indiana University, Chad began his career with Business News Daily in 2011 as a freelance writer. In 2014, he joined the staff full time as a senior writer. Before Business News Daily, Chad spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Chad has also worked on the other side of the media industry, promoting small businesses throughout the United States for two years in a public relations role. His first book, How to Start a Home-Based App Development Business, was published in 2014. He lives with his wife and daughter in the Chicago suburbs.