Resume Fraud More Common Than You Think

By, Acsys, Inc.

How many times have you received a resume from a potential employee and said to yourself, "This person is a perfect fit!" Sounds too good to be true? Probably because it is. According to Edward Adler, resume detective, and author of the book "The Complete Reference Checking Handbook", as many as one-third of all resume writers exaggerate their accomplishments, while up to 10 percent "seriously misrepresent" their background or work histories. In some fields, like sales, the numbers are even higher.

With a current unemployment rate of six percent, there are thousands of qualified candidates currently in the employment market, making competition fierce. As result, candidates are more likely to gloss over facts like dates of employment, job titles, or degrees obtained. Whether it's a blatant lie or "creative wording", resume fraud can cost a company considerably. Here are a couple of tips for spotting candidates that may be misrepresenting their qualifications during the interview process.

Look for red flags and test for honesty.

If you are using a recruitment firm or employment agency to aid you in your search, many of the basic background checks are performed before you even see the candidate's resume. But human capital is an important investment for your company, so you should consider performing a more in-depth check of the employee's background. Questioning former colleagues and further probing often reveals clues to past performance and problems.

Verify skills through tests and interviews.

In addition to outside services, there are numerous checks that you or your HR department can administer. Some companies have gone as far as to conduct basic, computerized honesty tests to potential candidates, especially when cash management or security is an integral component of the position. Additionally, some companies offer skill assessment or personality tests, like Myers Briggs, to their candidates during the interview process. There is also an increasing tendency to evaluate and verify hard skills, rather than soft skills and accomplishments claimed.

The best advice is to never hire someone who has clearly misrepresented themselves on their resume. "In the team environment of today's workplace, it's important that you can respect and trust your team members."

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