4 Ways to Spot False Information On Resumes

It can be challenging to distinguish between truth, exaggerations, and even straight-out lies on resumes as a hiring manager. According to Indeed, as many as 40% of people lie on their resumes. After all, the end game is capturing that open position – but at what cost? It’s often difficult to spot false information on resumes. So, how do you know your candidate is as brilliant as they appear on that fabulous resume?

While asking probing questions during the interview to determine whether a candidate comprehends specifics can help, here are four other ways to ensure a resume rings true.


#1 Reference Checks

Checking references is one of the easiest and efficient ways to determine whether a candidate is lying or not. Every story has two sides. Make sure you know why your candidate left their last position from their point of view as well as the company’s. While checking past employment references, ask about position titles, dates employed, and responsibilities. Additionally, feel free to ask open-ended questions to candidate’s references such as, “what were the candidate’s main responsibilities?” instead of generalized questions like “was the candidate a good employee?”


#2 Social Media Checks

Today, you can learn a lot about a candidate by looking up their social media profile. Typically, this is a great way to figure out what a candidate is like and cross-check their job application.

It’s also an easy way to check up on a candidate’s character. However, be careful not to judge an applicant based on factors that aren’t legally allowed such as pregnancy or religious views. Furthermore, only consider factors that will help you evaluate whether a candidate accurately represents themselves in their application.


#3 Employ Verification Services

Generally, a lot of background check service providers verify a candidate’s education and work history. Based on the complexity of a resume, verifications may take up to a few days or even weeks to complete. However, it will help gather detailed information like an applicant’s graduation date, degree, salary, and job title.

Due to the time and cost of these services, organizations traditionally save this stage for candidates who would likely receive a job offer.


#4 Skill Tests

The most effective way to determine if an applicant is honest about their experience is by testing their skills through a short project or skill test. Start by creating a project that tests a specific skill.

For instance, if you are hiring someone for digital marketing, ask them to mock up a social media marketing strategy for a product. Additionally, monitor their actions and performance to find whether their skill level is satisfactory and if you are pleased with the quality of their work.

You might also find online tools that test critical job functions. Or, you may opt to have current employees in similar roles put one together. Such tests, when administered properly and consistently, will help identify a candidate’s knowledge level. For example, if they claim to have four years of experience programming SQL but cannot answer basic questions, you know they aren’t honest.


Final Thoughts

Your journey towards hiring the right candidate might seem like an unnecessary and overwhelming process. Nevertheless, preventing even a single bad hire can save your business tens of thousands of dollars and many hours of lost time. Take the extra time to decrease the probability of making a bad hire.


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