Approximately one in three adults have some type of criminal record, and integrating into the workforce after acquiring a conviction can be a difficult journey to pursue. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) requires potential employers to remain impartial while performing background checks, but it is natural to be nervous about how a societal bias may impact your future career path. There are fortunately a large number of positions that offer what are referred to as “second-chance programs,” as well as careers that don’t require background checks at all.
Become a Sales Representative
Proactive sales reps are typically hard to come across, so these jobs are often hard to fill. Due to this shortage in prospective employees, sales rep positions don’t always require a thorough background check. There is usually no prior experience required, as long as you are open to learning and becoming assimilated to a fast-paced and high-energy role. Sales representatives make around $30.32 to $44.67 an hour, which is well above a comfortable wage.
Work as an Independent Contractor
The gig economy is steadily growing, causing more and more individuals to decide to become their own bosses as independent contractors. Participating in freelance work could potentially give you the opportunity to avoid background checks altogether, as long as you maintain a reputable presence in your chosen industry. Learning to code and becoming a freelance web developer is perhaps one of the most promising career paths, with over 58,600 prospective job openings becoming available in upcoming years. You can start this by learning computer languages, start with languages like Java, SQL, or Angular JS.
Get a Culinary Degree
Dining facilities are historically known for giving second chances to those who have prior criminal convictions. Many of these eating establishments, especially smaller businesses, do not require background checks at all. Culinary arts is far from becoming obsolete, with over 30,400 predicted job openings in the near future. If you do not want to dedicate the time to a full degree, many restaurants will accept just a vocational certificate instead.
Your prior criminal conviction does not have to mean hitting a brick wall when it comes to the pursuit of your dreams. Your career goals can still be accomplished with the proper knowledge and resources, enabling you to secure a position that is both profitable and enjoyable to you. Over 68% of those who enter the prison system have a stable employment history beforehand, so go build a LinkedIn profile or a redo your resume, keep your head up as you can successfully re-enter society.