Resume writing: Is it ok to lie on your resume?

Is is ok to lie on a resume? Will the employer really do the necessary pre-employment background screening to find out every little detail of what you’ve written? A little white lie never hurt anybody…right? Just ask George O’Leary, the Notre Dame football coach who was forced to resign five days after being hired when lies about his academic and athletic background came to light. That may be a high profile example, but in these difficult economic times, people are doing all they can to get a job; hence, companies are doing all the background checks necessary to ensure they hire the best person for the job. According to the 2009 Screening Index released by ADP, a human-resources and payroll provider, 46% of employment, education or credential reference checks conducted in 2008 revealed discrepancies. Now we’re not just talking about making the most of your positive attributes. We’re talking about an outright over-the-top exaggeration. For example, a claim that you were responsible for a successful project or integral to a specific task, when you weren’t. This would be a lie, plain and simple. Of course, you want to exaggerate your best attributes and successes, but you can’t pride yourself on something that didn’t actually happen. Background checks will provide the truth to the employer, and you’re chances of being hired are gone. Be honest with your potential employers. Make sure they know what you’re good at and what you’re proud of, but don’t create fictional claims to try and increase your chances. Background screening processes are very detailed these days, you’ll get found out in the end.]]>

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