How to Find Your Employment History (Online or via Employer)
What is employment history? Or a work history report? A work history report, often known as your full employment history, is a document that lists every job you've ever had. A potential employer can request a work history report when you apply for a new job to learn more about your previous work experience and how it pertains to the position. If you apply for benefits or a license in your sector, you can also require a comprehensive work history record.
What's a work history report?
A work history report is a comprehensive list of all previous jobs you've held. Others can use the information you offer to figure out what type of job you've done in the past, as well as your abilities and expertise to accomplish certain tasks. Your mental and physical needs at previous employment can also be detailed in a job history report.
What to include in your work history
On a job history report, the following are some of the most crucial details:
- The organization's name.
- The organization's location (city and state).
- Name and email address of your boss or supervisor.
- What your job title is or was.
- Start and finish dates for any responsibilities you were accountable for while in the position.
You can also include facts about your job that are unique to you, such as how you were able to implement improvements that benefited your department in some manner.
Include any pertinent information regarding previous jobs, as well as how the dates of employment correspond to your work history. If you have a gap in your job history, you should explain it in fully in your application. These data might reveal essential skills and experience you earned during that period, such as military duty, time in the Peace Corps, or time spent furthering your education.
Ways to get your work history report
If you've been working for a long time or have moved jobs frequently, you can not recall all of the specifics from each previous employment.
General steps to get your employment history:
- Access past tax records, W2 or 1099 forms, or pay stubs.
- Submit a request for Social Security Earnings Information Form with the Social Security Administration (requires a fee to be paid).
- Contact previous employers' human resource departments.
You have many alternatives for obtaining a work history report if you need help correctly listing your prior employment:
The first place to look for information about your previous work is through your Social Security records. Your employer will use your Social Security number to verify your eligibility to work in the United States whenever you are employed. That number should be connected to your whole work history.
The proportion of income you paid into the Social Security benefits program will also be included in your Social Security records. Look for Form 7050 on the Social Security Administration's website. Download the form and fill it out on your computer or print it off to fill out by hand. Form 7050 is also available in paper format at your local Social Security office. Your name, Social Security number, and date of birth will be required. Then mention that you want an itemized statement of earnings for a certain time period on the form.
The Social Security Administration charges a fee to obtain your data. The price for a non-certified statement is now $136, while the fee for a certified statement is currently $192. If you've been requested for a certified statement, you'll need to provide one. A non-certified statement will serve in most situations. Depending on how busy the SSA is at the time you request the report, it might take up to four months for it to be processed. If you haven't gotten it within that time frame, contact the Social Security Administration for an update.
The report will include all of your work history that is linked to your Social Security number. You can either send the report to the company or agency who requested your employment history or use the information to fill out the appropriate papers.
Your state's unemployment agency can also provide you with Social Security information. This method can also be free, however getting the data will be more challenging if you've resided in numerous states. Check with your state's office to discover what documents you have access to and whether you can begin piecing together your employment history this way.
Learn more about obtaining your records directly from the SSA.
Credit reporting companies do not always maintain track of a person's job history. This source can, however, be able to provide you with information regarding your past job history. Your credit report can contain information about your employment if you supplied it when applying for a loan, a credit card, or any credit-related inquiry. All three credit reporting agencies—Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion (major credit reporting agencies)—offer one free credit report each year. The Federal Trade Commission has only authorized the use of the Annual Credit Report website.
You can also acquire the information you need by contacting the main credit reporting companies directly. The latest employment verification date or the date your work status was last recorded as part of your credit history would almost certainly be included in these agencies' reports.
Services like Credit Karma can assist in this process, further.
IRS (Internal Revenue Service) records
Requesting your IRS documents is another way to get your whole work history. Your employer is required to send you with a Form W-2 at the conclusion of each tax year, whether you work full-time or part-time. This form details all of your earnings from that employment, as well as the amount of tax withheld. The employer's name and address, as well as your work dates, are all listed on Form W-2.
If you have copies of prior years' tax returns, you can utilize this information to locate and record your work history. The W-2s you got will detail where you worked and how much tax you paid in a given tax year. If you don't have copies, if you utilized online tax preparation services, you might be able to access the information online. Some of these businesses will provide you with free copies of your tax returns, while others can charge you a fee.
The IRS keeps your information from when you filed your tax returns each year on file as well. Download Form 4506 from the IRS website. This form allows you to get copies of your prior tax returns, which will include your previous employers' names and addresses, as well as the dates you worked for them. Form 4506 can be printed and filled out by hand or downloaded and filled out online. If you resided someplace else when you filed your tax returns, provide any former addresses, as well as the years of the tax returns you require.
You can also use the internet to look for information about your prior employment experience. You could have an online presence on a networking site that includes your previous resume/CV or employment data. You can also check for your complete name in a search engine to see if any information about your prior work comes up.
Look for papers that show your job experience and those that remind you of previous roles you've held. Details about your work can be included in blogs, social media accounts, and other online presences. Examine your email inbox to check whether you've gotten any communications from former employees. You can also try searching for work-related terms to see whether you have any emails from previous jobs that you sent or received.
Keeping track of your employment history
If you've already gone through the bother of digging out your job history, you'll want to be sure you don't have to go through it again.
Regularly updating and saving copies of your resume/CV is the greatest method to maintain track of your work history. Make adjustments as you change employment, get promoted, or take on new duties. It can be beneficial to compile a complete list of all your past employment so that you can keep track of everything in one spot. It can be used to create smaller resumes that are more targeted to certain job applications.
Your internet profiles should also be kept up to date. Whether you're looking for a job on LinkedIn or on a job board, you should fill up your profiles with as much information as possible.
Finding a job comes with its own set of worries and uncertainty. Keep detailed records of your job experience, update your master resume on a regular basis, and be certain that you've nailed at least one aspect of the application process.
Work history report example
Here's a work history report sample. In this sample we list each of your past employers, the former employers name, and employment dates.
Johnson and Johnson
- Assisted with office duties.
- Managed vendor relationships and unemployment benefits.
- Worked closely with the human resources department.
Kin and Kin
April 2008-June 2010
- Provided support to the executive staff.
- Managed multiple employees.
- Worked closely with other office managers.
Work history request email example
When requesting your employment history from past jobs:
Dear Human Resources Department —
I'm emailing because I was employed with your company around two years ago. Since then, I have lost track of my employment records. And I am hoping that you could send me my information on file.
What I'm looking for is my salary figure, a few pay stubs, and the dates that I was employed. If there's any other information that could be useful to me during my information gathering.
I sincerely appreciate your response. If you need to reach me please contact me at (644) 731-9387. I would be happy to verify my identity in order to share these employment details.
Our favorite resources are included below.
Job interview resources
- Common Interview Questions by Marquette University
- Prepare for Behavioral Interview Questions by Marquette University
- Preparing for Job Interviews by the University of Kansas
- Mock Interview Handbook by CSUCI
- Interview Guidebook by Lebanon Valley College
Resume and cover letter resources
- Writing a Resume and Cover Letter by USC
- Resume Writing Tips by the University of Wisconsin-Madison
- Resume and Cover Letter Guide by Harvard University
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