Desperate times call for desperate measures — and in a tough employment market, job hunters may be tempted to lie on their resume to make themselves more attractive to potential employers.
HireRight.com, recently found that 34 percent of job applicants lie on their resumes.
But job hunters who stretch the truth are playing a risky game according to Elizabeth Kingston, Director of Kingston Human Capital because “Background checks, tenure checks, qualification checks, job title checks, digital foot print checks, are much easier now,” she says. “It’s incredibly easy to dig for the data these days, and we expect the market to continue on this path of more intense scrutiny”
One small concession can have big consequences
Once identified, a significant lie on your resume can result in termination. “Losing the job is just the start of it” she says “the secondary impacts are long ranging, with ever-increasing inter-connectivity, an event like this can hit the digital grapevine and have far reaching consequences on your future employment”.
Even if you win the role with falsified resume, you’ll likely be caught out.
Think you are in the clear because you got the job ages ago? Don’t be so confident. If your Company is acquired, for instance, the acquirer may perform a talent audit of its new employees. What happens if the acquiring company has a more diligent background checking process? Have you considered that some companies recheck your background when you apply for a promotion? Your past indiscretions can come back to bite you.
You’ll have the job, but you still won’t have the right skills
When employers hire you, they do so on the basis that your resumé is an honest representation of your capability. They are hiring your skills for a reason. If you don’t truly have those skills or possess those experiences you’ll struggle in an observable manner and it’s likely you won’t meet the achievement milestones expected of you in the role. Why win the job just to find yourself struggling on a performance management plan?
Employers know you’re lying
“Most employers have some sort of background checking process in play and those that don’t should seriously review their hiring processes” urges Kingston. Companies focused on hiring top talent have gone far beyond the “two reference checks and a resume process” You may think you’re perfect for the role, but your employer will soon realize you can’t do your job and you’ll be asked to leave.
It will jeopardize your career
It won’t take long for your employer to realize the job doesn’t fit you and you’ll be stuck having to rationalize this during future job interviews. Lying begets lying. Don’t underestimate the fact that Companies competing with each other, often are strongly networked. It’s not unlikely for the General Manager of Company A to pick up the phone and have a chat with the General Manager of Company B.
You’ve worked hard to build a positive professional reputation, don’t jeopardize it.