Avoid Misfiring in Your Hiring! » Mind Tools Blog

Avoid Misfiring in Your Hiring!

June 10, 2016

©iStock/BrianAJackson

Recruitment is a tough business – for both the job applicant and the recruiter. The wannabe recruit is desperate to land his or her dream job, and the hirer needs to find the best possible candidate for his organization.

The pressure is on both sides, and that can lead to mistakes that could prove costly to both. Our article, 10 Recruitment Mistakes, examines some of the most common errors by recruiters. For the most part these are pitfalls in the process rather than errors of judgment and we give you some tips on how to avoid falling into them.

However, there are some well-documented cases of companies whose executives doubtless have woken in the wee small hours, haunted by unfortunate decisions. Pity Dick Rowe, the Decca record producer who famously turned down The Beatles, or the Toyota manager who wasn’t impressed by a young engineer named Soichiro. Undaunted, the engineer decided to set up on his own. What was his full name again? Oh yes, Soichiro Honda.

But there are times when it’s the applicant who really ought to have known better. Our article refers to a survey that revealed that almost 60 percent of the employers who took part have caught out candidates lying on their resumés. And some of the fibs are corkers! One can only wonder what made the poor souls believe they’d get away with it.

The survey, commissioned by U.S. recruitment specialist CareerBuilder™, lists some of the most memorable lies unearthed by prospective employers. It includes false claims to be an Olympic medalist, a basketball champion, and an assistant to a prime minister – in a country that does not have a prime minister!

Some of the lies could generously be described as “embellishment” of the truth. These candidates were rumbled, but could score points for trying. One interviewer discovered that a “construction supervisor’s” only experience was building a backyard dog house. Another applicant claimed to have 25 years’ work experience – at the age of 32.

In a competitive job market, job hunters will want to portray themselves in the most positive light. But, while we may chuckle at what some people have been prepared to put on their resumés, dishonesty can have serious consequences. If you are caught, it will damage your reputation and future employment prospects. If you do get a job because of lies on your resumé, chances are you’ll get found out, as you might not be able to actually do the job and will have to answer some uncomfortable questions from your employer. Honesty is the best policy!

Have you ever caught out someone who has lied on their resumé? Share your experiences in the comments section, below.


2 thoughts on “Avoid Misfiring in Your Hiring!

  1. Ronald Cluck wrote:

    very useful article.

    1. Midgie Thompson wrote:

      Thanks for the feedback. Hope you are able to implement some of the ideas. Do you have any to add that could help?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Please note that we reserve the right to remove comments that we feel are off-topic or offensive. Required fields are marked with an asterisk (*).

View our Privacy Policy.


© Mind Tools Ltd, 1996-2018. All rights reserved. "Mind Tools" is a registered trademark of Mind Tools Ltd.

Click here for permissions information.