I worked with a Company A for 3 months. I left the company because I couldn't work in night shifts. They have handed me the relieving letter.

I want to apply to another Company X as a fresher1. Would this have any consequences in background verification? How does it affect my PF (Provident Fund) and Gratuity?

1 Fresher is commonly used in India to refer to a fresh graduate looking for his or her first job.

  • Are you trying to hide the work you did for company "A"? If so, why? – Patricia Shanahan Nov 20 '16 at 7:21
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    What is PF? What do you mean by "hiding" exactly? This could range from not listing it on your C.V., failing to include it on a form asking to list your prior employments, to outright lying if someone asks you "did you work there?" – Brandin Nov 20 '16 at 12:19
  • VTC unclear. Perhaps some of our users with experience working in India can identify if this contains an answerable question? Right now I'm seeing three largely separate questions being asked and while MaskedMan did a stellar job in the edits and in his answer, this should perhaps be edited even further and split up into separate questions. – Lilienthal Nov 21 '16 at 1:04
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    "I left the company because I couldn't work in night shifts". Wouldn't it be easier just to apply normally and to give this reason if asked? e.g. "I tried to adjust, but the night shifts were too much for me" seems reasonable especially if the new job does not have night shifts. – Brandin Nov 21 '16 at 9:44
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    @MaskedMan Fair, I'm just thinking that the quality of the question and its searchability are somewhat lacking, especially compared to the quality of the answer below. But I don't have enough experience with India to make the right edits I think. – Lilienthal Nov 21 '16 at 10:32

I would strongly recommend that you avoid hiding your employment (as your post strongly suggests you want to do), especially if you already have the relieving letter. It keeps life simple and avoids a lot of potential future problems.

If you still go ahead with your clever plan, be prepared to provide a convincing reason in case someone finds out and asks. Be aware that you could be found out several years later, not just in the near future. While a 3-month stint left out of a resume is not a huge problem by itself, you should be wary of the perception it leaves. ("I wonder why he had to hide his first job. Did he do something seriously bad there, and doesn't want anyone to find out?")

Background verification at this point is unlikely to cause you any problems because for an entry level job, nobody will ask "Let us find out if he has worked anywhere else during this 3-month break". You can expect to be asked in the interview about the 3-month gap between your graduation and the application, but there are enough freshers who would truthfully answer "I was searching for a job", so you won't raise any brows there.1

Now, moving on to the question on Gratuity: you don't need to worry, because you are not eligible to receive it. Gratuity is only paid to an employee who completes 5 years of employment in a single stretch.

Finally, about the PF (Provident Fund), there are a number of points you need to be aware of:

  • PF is usually withdrawn after retirement, so you have a long time to deal with it (over 35 years, if you joined the workforce in early 20s, like most Indian IT employees). Unless you want to withdraw the amount immediately, you shouldn't have any problem. At this stage, a few thousand rupees of PF shouldn't matter much anyway.
  • You only have to reveal your old PF account to your new employer if you want to transfer the amount to the new PF account. You can simply avoid doing this transfer, without major consequences. Your money is safe with EPFO (Employees' Provident Fund Organization), and your old employer cannot do anything about it.
  • Over the course of your 35+ year long career, you will most likely change employers several times. You can transfer the money from this PF account to one of the future employers and be done with. The PF amount earned as a "fresher" in 3 months is rather small, so waiting for a few years to complete this transfer shouldn't be much of an issue for you.
  • The recent trend has been that the Government of India has tried making the PF increasingly employee-friendly. There is a definite possibility that in the near future, you could operate the PF account directly without any of your employers involved.
  • One issue you could face is multiple UANs (Universal Account Number), if company A has already generated one for you. Since your new company wouldn't know about it, they will generate a new one. In that case, simply fill up a form to ask EPFO to merge your two UANs. It would be prudent to do this after you end employment with the new company.
  • You will not have any issue with background verification if you follow the above advice. Companies in India typically don't care beyond the past two employments in background verification. If your 5th employer finds out, perhaps 10 years later, about a 3-month stint at the start of your career, they wouldn't bother much.

1 On a personal note, I find it extremely disconcerting when honest people commonly having a genuine issue allows others to get away with pretending that they too have the same issue.

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  • Why the downvote? – Masked Man Nov 20 '16 at 8:20
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    I'm not the down voter, but could you explain some of the terminology used? For example, PF (pension fund?), UAN etc. Helps for those who don't know what they are :) – Moo Nov 20 '16 at 12:24
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    @MaskedMan: While this site is still a bit US-centric, there are many people here not from the US, and US-specific things do often get an explanation later. I, being neither from the US nor from India, appreciate your explanations. Interesting to see how things work elsewhere. – sleske Nov 20 '16 at 17:29

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