In a new CareerBuilder survey of more than 2,000 hiring managers and human resource professionals nationwide, nearly 3 in 5 employers say they have caught a lie on a resume. One third of these employers say they have seen more applicants embellishing their resumes since the end of the recession.
When it comes to the areas of their resumes job seekers take the most artistic license, employers gave the following responses:
- Embellished skill set – 57 percent
- Embellished responsibilities – 55 percent
- Dates of employment – 42 percent
- Job title – 34 percent
- Academic degree – 33 percent
- Companies worked for – 26 percent
- Accolades/awards – 18 percent
Though some employers are willing to forgive a few embellishments here or there, differentiating between an embellishment and an outright lie is no easy task. Take the following steps to ensure the resumes you review are legit:
- Always check references. Reference-checking is “one of the most important things you can do as part of the hiring process,” according to author and business expert Jay Goltz. References can help you verify things like responsibilities and dates of employment.
- Run a preliminary background check on things like work history, residences and dates of employment to see if there are any discrepancies between what the candidate submitted and what the reports reveal.
- Ask about gaps in employment. If candidates are reluctant to explain the reason for the gap or why they left their last job, it could be a red flag that something is amiss.
- Check social media. A candidate’s social media profile can help you verify information, such as work history or education credentials.
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