Everyone, at some point in time, has done something shady in their past. Be it steal the eraser of a school mate or bully someone in high school not knowing that it was morally wrong to do so. However, some of you may have taken it a notch higher and continued the trend in your adult lives which may, at some point get you convicted. An experience like that (of staying in jail) is bound to change anyone, and if you are reading this article, then you stand as testimony to the fact that everyone wants to change, as well.
Finding a job where you won’t be judged based on your past is not very hard these days, but that does not mean that it is very easy either. A lot of companies strive to turn a blind eye to your criminal background up until the interviews, while others ask you to fill out the application form which asks you about your criminal records as well (among other things). More often than not, companies screen you out if you mention a felony you’ve committed in the last few years, owing to their hiring policies and whatnot.
But, one thing that you shouldn’t forget is that a lot of companies do hire felons. They give them entry-level jobs. However, they do not discriminate and with time even promote them if they prove their worth. As the heading suggests, the company that this article will be focussing on is Walmart.
Being a company that is over 2.4 million staff strong, Walmart is a reputed string of hypermarkets and grocery stores. They operate in 27 countries. They have a number of job profiles ranging from deli supporter to data scientist. The company is the amalgamation of the effort of every single employee.
Some of the entry-level jobs in the company include clerks, operators, delivery associates and so on. For the most part, the pay for these entry-level jobs is on an hourly basis. The average pay in different areas ranging from $10 to $15.
If your felony was not one related to money handling, you can apply for the post of a cashier as that is the one that pays the best among the entry-level jobs. However, you’ll need to hone your interaction skills and learn to put on a smart and polite face no matter what is thrown at you by the customer.
Other sectors that offer entry-level jobs include loading and stocking, installation and maintenance, food preparation and service, logistic support, etc.
Will Walmart Hire You?
The very existence of this article is to assure that Walmart does hire felons.
Some doubts that you may have, include the possibility of Walmart turning you down if you’ve committed a felony. In this case, there is definitely no need to worry as the hirers at Walmart look past these things. However, you will need to convince them that you have changed since committing the felony.
It can be said with conviction that you will get a job at Walmart (if you’ve changed), because of the following reasons.
1. Walmart Supports Ban-The-Box Movement
Ban-the-box movement is one campaign that has gained a lot of prevalence over the years. Essentially the movement entails for organizations to refrain from asking about criminal backgrounds of the applicant prior to the interview stage, that is, on the application form, be it online or offline.
This ensures that you have a fair chance of explaining yourself directly to the interviewer without giving way for any wrong assumptions that can be made on reading a piece of information in written form.
2. Walmart Has Taken The Fair Chance Business Pledge
This pledge entails for the company which has taken the pledge to remain impartial while filtering out or choosing employees while hiring, irrespective of their previous criminal records, thus giving them a fair second chance.
Being two agreements/pledges that are not taken lightly, you can rest assured that you’ll get employed if you actually deserve the job.
Does Walmart Do Background Checks?
Being the reputed chain of stores that it is, Walmart obviously conducts a background check. They employ different bodies that specialize in checking backgrounds. These include US Alias VERIFY, National Security Research, Federal Criminal Research, Name and Address History Report, Nationwide Sex Offender Search, Country Criminal Search, etc. The period of check can vary from 7 – 10 years from state to state. Occasionally they may even go back further. If they deem it necessary, they could go back to a period double that of usual.
The checks reveal the entirety of your records irrespective of convictions and non-convictions. The check also lets Walmart know about your financial records, stability, and driving records. Even if your felony falls within the time period, it is okay for you to apply. You will need to prove to your to-be employers that you’ve now changed.
How to Get Hired at Walmart with a Felony?
1. Be Candid
This is one rule that you should follow no matter where you apply. Being truthful about yourself, both on paper and in person can go a long way in convincing the hirers that you have nothing to hide.
It is safe to say that in the chance that they discover you’ve lied, you’ve surely lost the opportunity to work for them, as against a situation where you were truthful, which at least convinces them of your integrity, thus increasing your chances of employment at the establishment.
2. Own Up to What You’ve Done and Be Confident
Confidence is one quality that goes a long way in helping you make an impression on the interviewers. And taking responsibility for your actions talks more about your maturity than a resume ever will.
So, it goes without saying that doing both these things will help your recruiter make a mental note of the same. This further implies that the chance of you getting a callback is more probable than someone (a person free of any felony, even) who the recruiter does not remember.
3. Be Patient
The process of hiring (and in the extension being hired) is a long drawn one. Starting from an online application to being called for the interview on being shortlisted itself can take a week or two. This depends on the number of applicants and the kind of people the hirers are looking for.
Once you give the interview, drug testing and background checks are done from Walmart’s end. These can also be fast or slow depending on the organization. It also depends on how loaded they are.
After the results of the drug and background tests are out, it might take a while. Then the hiring manager will get back to you. It is necessary that you do not call them intermittently during this period. You do not want to make them wary of even picking your calls.
However, if it has been really long, say 3-4 weeks, it would do you good to call the manager. You can check to see where you stand. This is so that you can apply in other places in the chance that you did not get through.
4. Stop Using Drugs in case You Do
Considering that a drug test is part of the recruitment process, it goes without saying that using drugs before the test is detrimental to the possibility of your selection. Once you clear the drug tests and other steps in the process and get the job, that does not mean that you can use drugs then.
Walmart occasionally conducts drug tests impromptu to keep you on your tail. Thus, if you really want a second shot at life, this is a habit that you need to give up.
5. Prepare for Your Job Portfolio
For you to land a job, it is highly imperative that you are apt for it. It does you no good to apply for a job that may be beyond you. This is because chances are high that a person who is more qualified than you might land the job.
In this case, there are two things you can do. You can apply for an entry-level job that you can easily land with your present portfolio. You could also undergo training and attend online courses. These will help you learn the turf better before applying for the position. Strengthening your resume with such added courses and certifications will also prove to be useful. It will help in getting you a job faster than those who do not do the same.
Also, it would do you good to apply to positions that are not related to a felony. This will convince the hiring manager that you’re not looking for trouble, thereby increasing your chances of selection.
In a nutshell, it is very easy to get a job at Walmart. However, you should be able to showcase the fact that you have come a long way. You should also be willing to start afresh without any intention of wronging your employer. Follow the guidelines mentioned here. Do read up about your job portfolio before you appear for the interview, and you’ll be set for life. You could even be graduating from an entry-level job to a managerial one, soon enough.
All the best for your application!