Caught in the Act: Most Common Resume Lies Revealed

In an effort to protect your company, it is likely that you insure your organization against worst-case scenarios from impacting your business. But outside of typical insurances such as EPLI, D&O, and Liability, when it comes to hiring employees are you insuring yourself
against hiring the wrong employees?

Whether your organization has 500 employees or 5, chances are they were each required to apply for their respective positions by submitting a resume and employment application verifying the information listed on their resume.

Once candidates have applied and successfully interviewed for a position, most hiring managers feel confident that based on the information they have on paper and in person they are prepared to select the most-qualified candidate and extend an offer. Wrong!

Regrettably a number of candidates who progress in the hiring process with prospective employers lie on their resume; which can be as mundane as embellishing an accomplishment to the more offensive forging of employment dates to conceal a prison stay for drug possession.

Regardless if hiring managers feel confident in a candidates experience as documented on their resume, Human Resources should always make the effort to verify the information for each candidate. If your organization does not have a formal HR department, impart the responsibility onto the manager considering the hire and stress the importance in substantiating candidate resumes through reference and background checks.

Whether you’re inundated with a significant volume of resumes on a weekly basis or have relatively minimal experience when it comes to surveying resumes for inaccuracies, listed below are some of the most common resume blunders candidates include on their resume:

Lies by Omission. The most common lie used by candidates across the board is to manipulate dates of employment to hide employment gaps due to instances such as involuntary terminations; College Degrees. Remember the scandal behind RadioShack’s CEO, Dave Edmondson lying about having a college degree? Unless you were in the graduating class with the candidate, verify their education, especially if the position requires it; Language Proficiency. If a candidate lists on their resume that they are fluent in another language always confirm it!

Many candidates will include some type of foreign language to make their resume more appealing to potential employers, even if the last time they remotely spoke Spanish was ordering Huevos Rancheros for breakfast; Show Me the Money. Unless you require W-2s or some sort of other documentation that verifies the salary of a candidate at their last position, be prepared to shell out more than you likely would have had you taken the time to check income; Honor Student. Some recent college graduates lie about their GPA, honors, accomplishments, and activities to compete with their fellow graduates. Confirm this information and refer back to “College Degrees”. Just because they are interviewing at the right time along with their graduating class doesn’t always mean that they actually received their diploma.

Of course you may encounter other resume lies and embellishments independent of the ones listed above; nonetheless, remember to keep a diligent eye on catching any discrepancies on a candidates resume that differs from reality. Remember, the time invested to confirm a
candidates resume and background is your insurance against hiring an underqualified or risky candidate.