Embellish your resume? – that’s a dangerous game

August 16, 2011

Having been in the professional services recruiting field for over thirty years now I have seen every possible situation where well meaning and completely sincere job seekers sometimes get caught in the resume embellishment trap. Trust me, what seems like an innocent or innocuous little stretch in dates here or adding a few extra resposnsibilities there can sometimes can get you into really hot water and cause you to lose that much coveted opportunity.

So, when applying for that perfect position, it’s more crucial than ever to fully and accurately disclose all relevant information about your experience, skills, and especially education. Time was when employers might assume the accuracy of certain information you provided, partly because it may have been difficult or time consuming to verify absolutely everything. The internet has, of course made the world a smaller and much more accessible place. Today, anyone can find out anything about you with the click of a mouse so for that reason alone, full discloure is always the best policy in a job search.

Case in point: Recently we were working with a candidate with rich skills from some Tier One global companies as a Supply Chain Planning candidate. His resume indicated that he had received a Bachelor degree from a respected foreign University. However as part of the rigourous screening process, when that University was contacted to verify his credentials, it turned out that while the candidate had indeed studied there, the degree had not been completed. The candidate’s resume did not indicate that the degree was incomplete: worse, as part of the onboarding process, he completed additional application paperwork in which this fact was not disclosed either.

The last thing one wants as a candidate (and this is true for executives as much as for anyone) is to do or say anything which may be misconstrued and potentially call into question ones honesty, integrity or trustworthiness.

The last thing an employer wants to do is hire anyone who cannot be trusted implicitly and that starts from the moment one enters into a dialogue with a possible employer. Assume that every fact one utters, every claim one makes regarding ones background will be checked and verified.

It’s simple really – be open and honest about everything in your background especially with your recruiting partner. At Argentus, the best and most rewarding relationships which result in positive outcomes are rooted in open communication. No-one can deal with a surprise well so full disclosure is always the best policy.

Stay tuned for more

Over and Out

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