I'm wondering what is the proper approach for the following situation:

I'm technically a contract employee at a large company. On my resume I did not mention I was a contractor and put my title and large company name. I interviewed directly with the large company and was offered the position as a contractor. A staffing agency then called me and put me on their payroll (W2).

I recently applied and interviewed at a new job. During the interview process I let everyone know what I was in a contract position at the large company.

Do I write the large company or the staffing agency on the background check?

  • Which company's name is on your paycheck?
    – Lumberjack
    Commented May 16, 2016 at 23:48
  • @Lumberjack the staffing agency. I've updated my resume to reflect that and assured that the company that offered me a position received that updated resume. I even placed a phone call with the recruiter to make sure that there's perfect clarity. He informed me that it is not something that would of disqualified me.
    – stamps
    Commented May 17, 2016 at 0:07
  • [Large company] on behalf of [staffing agency] is an option for the résumé that's worth considering. Commented May 20, 2016 at 23:36

1 Answer 1


The staffing agency is your employer. That's what you should list everywhere (including on your resume).

If the background check company contacts the large company's HR department, they're going to have no record of you working for them (since you don't work for them). If the background check company contacts the staffing agency's HR department, they'll confirm that you are an employee. That's what you want.

  • Would it be a problem that it is not on my resume currently? Perhaps considered malicious?
    – stamps
    Commented May 16, 2016 at 23:19
  • @stamps - It could, yes. Your resume really should have listed your actual employer (though it could certainly indicate the client(s) that you did work for as well). If everyone that you spoke with was clear that your resume did not actually reflect the company you were working for, it shouldn't come as a shock when you list the correct company on your background check form. If someone thought that you were employed by the large company, though, it could create questions. All you can hope for now is that they're willing to chalk it up to an honest mistake. Commented May 16, 2016 at 23:23
  • 1
    I worked as an independent contractor for some time. For the names of companies and projects I wanted to feature in my resume, I put "Notable Clients and Projects" as a section underneath it. I did the same thing for the period that I worked for a consulting company. I've never run into anyone who couldn't understand it. YMMV Commented May 17, 2016 at 2:43

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