If you have a felony conviction and are looking for a steady job with good pay, consider applying to UPS.
Many felons don’t think UPS would hire someone with a criminal background. However, this is not true, and the company has a history of employing felons with relevant experience, on a case by case basis.
Find out what types of jobs you would be eligible for, work requirements, pay, and how to apply.
Top job opportunities for felons
If you are interested in working for United Postal Service and have a felony, you have the most chances of getting the following entry level jobs:
– delivery driver assistant
– package handler
– seasonal employment
– warehouse worker
In fact, UPS hires around 90,000 seasonal package handlers and drivers during holiday seasons. This can be your prime opportunity to land a job.
One potential downside of working as a package handler is that you will be asked to work a 12 hour shift, which can be very hard, especially if you are older. Moreover, you should expect to be on your feet all the time, as well as be able to lift heavy packages to a specific height (sometimes as high as 5 feet).
Another option worth considering is working at a UPS warehouse; its very labor intensive, so people don’t stay for a long time.
As a result, new workers are always needed, and the pay is ok $12 per hour. A felon has a better chance of getting this type of work, compared to other jobs that require you to deal with clients.
One big perk of this job is that the company has a great tuition repayment plan. This may be very helpful if you plan to get a college degree or professional training. In many areas you can take advantage of the repayment plan as quickly as 6 weeks after starting the job.
Moreover, UPS prefers to promote workers from within the company. So once you get your foot in the door (even as a seasonal employee), and you work hard, there is a very strong chance you will get a permanent position with benefits or a promotion.
If you work for UPS part time for one year, you start getting benefits – very high quality health and dental insurance. This is a huge deal if you have health issues, or need a good health insurance for your spouse and/or kids.
However, keep in mind that you ONLY get the health insurance after you stay with UPS for 12 months, NOT before. This is often not made clear during the hiring process, and many people get disappointed that they don’t have any benefits when they are starting the job.
Its important to note, that the percentage of felons that actually get a job offer after applying is very small, under 10%. However, the company reviews each case individually, which means you should still apply!!!
As with most jobs, there are also drawbacks to consider. Current and former employees have had the following complaints:
– Physically taxing work: you get aches and pains all over your body
– Managers tend to give sick and personal days to senior employees, so you may not get them if you are starting out, even though you are eligible for them
– Pay is relatively low compared to many other companies
– Part time workers get very few working hours, as little as 3 per day. This makes your overall paycheck even smaller
– Your health insurance benefits kick in only after working for a full year
– Warehouse workers and package handlers are often not treated well by managers
UPS hiring policy regarding felons
Officially, the company doesn’t discriminate against applicants with a criminal record. Managers review each case and make their decision based on a combination of factors:
1. What was the felony and the circumstances surrounding it?
2. How long ago was it?
3. Is there more than one felony conviction?
4. Your personality, skills and training and whether they would be a good match for the position
5. The position you are applying for. As mentioned before, seasonal or warehouse work would be your best shot.
6. Are you honest about your conviction and willing to share details?
Particular felonies that may disqualify you from employment or severely decrease your chances are:
1. Violent crimes
2. Drug trafficking
There have been cases of felons receiving a verbal job offer after the interview, but being called back and denied the job, based on a previous criminal record, even if it was more than 7 years ago.
If this happens to you, don’t get discouraged! Felons who are persistant and just keep applying for jobs, eventually see success.
Application and hiring process
Here is what the hiring process at UPS looks like:
1. Apply online At this stage you will be asked about basic identity information and criminal history. Its essential to answer everything truthfully!
Felons who have been able to gain employment share that HONESTY is a huge deal for the company. If the hiring manager discovers that you have been lying about your past, or hiding something, you will be let go on the spot.
2. If you are called back, you will will go to a group interview/orientation. Here, a hiring manager will discuss the details of the job, company policies and asks some questions. This is another time to be honest about your criminal record.
3. Next, you will go through a very thorough criminal background check, and a drug test. Because UPS ships thousands of packages across the world, they need to make sure that every one of their employees is trustworthy and will not steel anything.
Consequently, its company policy to run an in – depth background check on all candidates. It will include information from both state and national data bases, sex offender lists, etc. In addition to felonies, all misdemeanors, pending charges, as well as incarceration records will be available for the company to review.
Similarly, you cannot avoid a drug test. The standard procedure is to take a urine sample to test for any drug substances. You will be sent to a separate location (often its a local health center, or walk-in clinic) to provide a urine sample. They will not disclose the test results to you directly. Instead, they will let UPS know whether the drug test was clean or not.
If you are interested in becoming a package driver, be prepared that there will also be a thorough review of your driving record. In case UPS does not hire you as a driver, you may have more success finding work as a commercial truck driver.
It may take 7-10 days for the background check to come back, so you need to be patient at this stage in the process. Sometimes people have waited as long as 2-3 weeks to get a call back.
4. If you seem to be a good fit so far, they will call you for a personal interview.
5. At the interview, once again honesty is the best policy. You should stress that you have changed and want to re-enter society as a hard working, law abiding citizen. Talk about your strong work ethic and personal qualities that would make you a desirable employee.
One felon’s success story
One of our readers has sent us a story about how he was able to get a job at UPS:
“Well I ended up applying for a UPS position over the internet. I have a grand theft felony so I thought this would hurt me, but it did not. I was given a very labor intensive position.
This part time position was what I needed and after a year I will have full time benefits. The environment is great and is very conducive to personal growth. They know all about my felony so this will never be an issue in the future. I am pretty happy about all of this. I hope this helps someone.”
So, definitely apply, and hope for the best!
Other jobs for felons
If you are interested in working as a package handler, but have not been able to get a job with UPS, you can try applying to similar companies. These include, FedEx, Amazon, DHL Express, the Freight Rate Company.
Also, large moving companies, such as Xtreme Movers, Allied Van Lines, Moving APT, and small time local moving companies may be interested in hiring you, especially for seasonal work.
Its also a good idea to think outside the box and consider what other types of jobs you may be able to do. One way to try out many different jobs quickly is work for a local temp agency. While you may only get a job for 2-3 weeks at a time, you will gain a good sense of your skills and preferences.
Please share this post on social media to help give other felons this information!