I am currently in the process of applying to another employer, and it looks like the hiring manager wants a copy of my transcript and diploma.

I am currently employed, and I think I sent out the original copies to my current employer. Would it be bad to ask for scans of those? Wouldn't they know I am applying for another job? Wouldn't this mean bad things for me?

The company I'm applying for asked me for these documents one day before the interview, and if I get these documents from my school it would take a lot of days.

  • 1
    Hi Marcos, I added paragraphs; it makes your question easier to read, which means more people are likely to take the time to read and answer. Good luck!
    – jmort253
    Mar 6, 2014 at 7:02
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    "I sent out the original copies to my current employer" Since when does an employer get to keep original copies?? Is that common in your country (in which case I recommend adding a country-specific tag to your question)? Here (The Netherlands) this is unthinkable: the employer can make copies (and there's even limitations to which documents) but never keep originals. They are yours, not theirs.
    – user8036
    Mar 6, 2014 at 11:02
  • Hello Marcos. I would like to comment, like Mistah stated, you should not send a copy of your degree ahead. Everything has it's appropriate time. Also, I would like to state that depending on the company work culture, and who you ask that to, they may look at this situation really badly. As Joe said, you can get a copy from your school. If you can talk to them about this, and get it from your school, do it.
    – Hugo Rocha
    Mar 6, 2014 at 12:31
  • In which country are you applying for a job?
    – Relaxed
    Mar 6, 2014 at 16:04
  • "Wouldn't they know I am applying for another job ?" Your current employer should know if you accepted a job elsewhere. You can't just not show up one day... Mar 10, 2014 at 21:48

5 Answers 5


You can ask, but why you don't have the originals already is very curious. Most companies don't want original documents, as they then become liable if the documents are misused or stolen. They should have copied the documents that you gave them and then returned the originals.

In fact, that's how you should address the matter. You should tell them that you mistakenly gave HR your only copies of your degree and your transcript and that you'd like to "rectify your mistake" and allow them to retain copies for their records while your originals are returned to you.

Side note: You should probably not send a copy of your degree and your transcripts ahead of receiving simply an interview. An interview is not a guarantee of employment and the target company may not have the internal controls necessary to keep your personal information from being misused.

If you are seriously in the running as a candidate, the proper order of things would be for the company to first tender you an offer based upon the successful completion of a background check, including educational accomplishments.

In my experience (which I'll admit is limited to companies in North America) which "pre-check" employees before even interviewing them are far less likely to then hire many of those individuals.

  • Sending ahead or not depends hugely on the country. In Germany a “traditional” application includes a copy of every transcript all the way to secondary school and it's not uncommon for companies to ask for them before even starting to process the application.
    – Relaxed
    Mar 6, 2014 at 13:19
  • Also, the meaning of the last paragraph is unclear: Less likely compared to what? Surely, they do hire people too.
    – Relaxed
    Mar 6, 2014 at 13:22
  • "Less likely" than offering an interview, assessing the candidate and then offering a position contingent to the interviewee passing a background check. What occurs in Germany is likely only what occurs there.
    – Mistah Mix
    Mar 6, 2014 at 13:40
  • Do you mean that companies in the US are less likely to ask for transcript upfront than to interview first? That would make sense to me but it's not how I understood the last sentence of your answer.
    – Relaxed
    Mar 6, 2014 at 14:00
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    I don't disagree with your answer as a whole, I just got the impression you simply assumed that your personal experience applies everywhere (which is demonstrably false) and did not even suspect that things could be different elsewhere. I am also a bit annoyed that you seem willing to engage in a lengthy discussion but not to make some simple edits to improve the answer.
    – Relaxed
    Mar 6, 2014 at 14:40

the hiring manager wants a copy of my transcript and diploma.

At least in the US, you can request these from your school. There is no need to approach your current employer.

Once you request them, and learn how long it will take for them to arrive, notify your hiring manager. He/she will almost certainly understand, as this likely isn't the first time she/he has asked for them.

  • If they want official ones the only way to get them is from the school. They will either send them to a third party or to you with some sort of seal. Mar 6, 2014 at 16:55

Is it alright?

Yes, probably. From a paranoid standpoint, it tips your hand that you're doing something. You could be applying for a grant, grad school, or a new job - so it's not necessarily that you are planning to quit soon. But someone asking for a copy of the transcript is bound to be a bit of a puzzle in the HR department.

Is it efficient?

Probably not. If you think you will get the copy from your work quickly, you are mistaken. The HR department doesn't have a vested interest in getting this for you quickly, and it may well be hard to find. Don't assume that this is the fastest path if you need these documents in a hurry - try multiple paths, including calling your school.

Is it weird?


In some situations, the new position will be looking for a verified transcript that is send directly from your school to the employer. It's generally not assumed that your current employer is the best place to get paperwork that is relevant to your time at a different institution (your school).

In essence, it's not your employer's job to be the keeper of your paperwork. It's your job. When you give a document that you have 1 original copy of, give a copy, not the original. If the next employer insists on an original, then insist that you have the time to request it from your school.

It's not at all unreasonable to say that 1 day of turnaround time is NOT reasonable for paperwork like this. My approach would actually be to go to the interview with a printout or copy of my transcript & diploma - whatever I can find online, and to promise to have already requested a formal dispatch from the school that will arrive in whatever number of days the school can manage.


Just ask for a copy from hr. You don't have to give them any explanation about why you want copies. If they request to know why you want a copy, you want it for your personal records. And don't volunteer any more than that.


Yes, by all means you can ask for the documents. You might require those documents for many reasons, and not only to apply for another employer, because of that, your current company should not see that as a problem, and it would not cause anything bad to happen to you.

You can just tell them that you need to take copies of them, and keep it for multiple purposes, like applying for higher studies, other applications, etc...

  • 1
    the current employer shouldn't even have the originals... Unless MAYBE it's for training received that was paid for by the company in which case they might have gotten the papers and stored them in your personel file, but in my experience that's never happened.
    – jwenting
    Mar 10, 2014 at 15:17

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