Thursday, March 26, 2009

Keep Your Resume Honest

This morning, listening to a local radio morning show, I heard the story of a caller who was in danger of losing her job. She confessed on the radio that after a frustrating two year long job search she took desperate measures and lied on her resume and the job application. She indicated that she had all the right experience for the job and also falsely told them she had a degree in their field of expertise. She had only been there for a month and was just asked for a meeting so she was expecting her house of cards to fall. She was asking for advice on the radio about how to keep her job, but the hosts and most of the callers believed the damage had already been done and it was probably too late for her. After hearing her story, I thought this advice would be key for current job seekers both here at DISCOVER STAFFING and throughout the area.

The percentage of people who lie on resumes is both astounding and disturbing. As reported by Forbes Magazine in 2006, CEO Sunny Bates of a New York based executive recruiting firm estimated that 40% of resumes contained purposefully inaccurate information. Some most common untruths include changing dates of employment to hide gaps or job hopping, college degrees that don't exist and fudging numbers such as increased sales percentages or number of people managed.

When you apply for a job and complete their official job application, you are signing a legally binding document indicating that you have provided accurate information. When the truth is revealed the most likely action on the part of the employer is immediate termination. Georgia is an "At Will" state and this means that either party can terminate the employment agreement at any point. There can and will be repercussions if you obtain a job under false presences.

Many companies today are using background checking services that not only check for a prior criminal record but also verify things like education and identity. Once you agree to these processes you will be responsible for their results. Also, references are of critical importance. Companies are looking for legitimate employment references to show that you have the skills you have expressed on your resume or application.

In order to maintain a stable working relationship, it is really best for you to start out with a clean slate. Present yourself with honesty and integrity. When you land a position you will feel very satisfied with how you have conducted yourself on the job market. You will also maintain a good reputation and in the future if you find yourself back in the market your employer will have no problem providing recommendations for your work.