The most common resume lie? Education.

In a recent study by Hloom, education was shown to be the #1 topic people lie about on their resume.

In fact, 5 of the top 10 lies reported were all related to education history: college graduated from (#1), academic degree (#3), college major (#4), GPA (#5), college minor (#8).

Perhaps even more surprising is that just 9% of respondents indicated that they would not lie on a resume. 91% not only do so, but were willing to publicly admit to it. Demographically, males aged 55 to 64 suggested that they were the likeliest group to lie on a resume.

What leads people to fabricate, exaggerate, and lie on resumes? By far, the top reason (given by 49.3% of people) is to appear a better fit for the position they’re applying for. The #2 reason, offered by 21.7% of respondents, is to appear well-rounded or more experienced.

Verifying a candidate’s education

While this data might be a surprise to some employers, it’s certainly not to employment screening companies. Education has always proved a popular place on the resume to provide false information; 23% of organizations polled in the 2018 Employment Screening Benchmark Report from HireRight said that background checks revealed misrepresentations in educational credentials.

That report goes on to show that, despite this evidence, only 51% of organizations verify a candidate’s education.

Education verification and reference checks ought to be a critical part of an employment screening program. Demonstrating due diligence by validating education references will give you a deeper insight into your applicants: who’s lying and how severe those lies are.

For more information on how to better verify your applicant’s education, get in touch with our team today.

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