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>Why DUI = Career Killer

Seeing blue lights in your rear view mirror is never a good feeling, but if you’ve been drinking when you get pulled over there’s a lot more at stake than just your drivers license and the fines you may be about to incur.

As a recruiter, we work primarily with sales and management roles where company vehicles are part of the job. Driving records are one of the first things we ask about and a DUI on your record is a quick and easy way to eliminate yourself from consideration for just about any job we work.

It seems like most of the DUI incidents come with recent college grads who successfully earned themselves a DUI while in college which will leave a huge black mark on their record for around the next 5-7 years.

That means for most companies we work with, you will not even be considered for a job until, at the minimum, it is off your record in 5 years and some companies will not hire you if you have EVER had a DUI.

Many entry level jobs that we have require that the employee either drive a spreader truck, spray rig or just have permission to jump into a company truck to run errands from time to time. If you have a DUI, they will not hire you even for those entry level roles.

Why are they so strict on DUI’s on your record? Two words, Insurance and Liability.

Having a DUI on your driving record raises your insurance premiums because you are now considered much more likely to be involved in an accident. Hopefully you learned your lesson, but regardless, for the next 7 years, you are in a much higher insurance premium bracket than someone who doesn’t have a DUI on their record. If you have a company vehicle or just have to drive some vehicle or piece of equipment that the company owns, they have to have full coverage insurance on you and when someone has a DUI on their record, it costs the company way more money to insure you and 99% of companies are not going to pay for the higher premiums and their lawyers wouldn’t let them insure you anyway.

Getting a DUI while employed can also cause career sabotage. If you lose your license for a certain amount of time and your job requires you to be on the road or drive company owned equipment, that leaves you in a pretty tough spot. Sometimes companies can move you around to compensate for the loss of license, but it tarnishes your record and will probably limit your promotion potential or ability to move back into the role to drive a company vehicle.

Also, looking at it from the company’s perspective, your decision to drive under the influence is not a mistake. It’s a deliberate decision that reflects on your decision making abilities and has the company questioning your ability to make the right decision. The company is thinking, if you decided to drive under the influence, are you going to make poor decisions in your job too? While it’s not fact, but the perception is – YES!

There are so many talented people in the job market today, regardless of your skills, previous success or business you could bring to them, companies are not willing to expose themselves to potential risk and higher insurance rates on a person who has already proven they make bad decisions.

Having a DUI on your record has just limited you to the jobs that you can be considered for and pretty much leaves us as recruiters unable to help you.

So, for college kids, realize that what happens in college doesn’t just stay in college. That driving record lingers with you for at least 5 years and for those who incur DUI’s while in their career, it doesn’t make changing jobs very easy.

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