Do You Fact Check CV's?

A survey carried out by Government’s Higher Education Degree Datacheck (HEDD) discovered that a shocking 40% of graduates and students have exaggerated their grades, 31% lied about how much of the course they’d completed and 11% claimed to hold a degree which they didn’t!

There is numerous stories about people being found out when lying on CV's most recently a police officer was suspended after it was found out he had lied about his qualifications and experience on his CV.

So do you check the information given on CVs and how do company’s spot lies when recruiting?

When recruiting, you should always be remember that CVs are a guide, and whilst they can be a really useful screening tool, only by interviewing the candidates can you qualify the claims made on their CVs.

Prior to any interviews, study the CV and highlight any areas where you feel further investigation or explanation is required. If there are any gaps or inconsistencies they should be discussed with the candidate. There may very well be a good reason for them – such as sickness or redundancy.

Hiring the wrong person can bring a lot of implications and also takes a lot of time and effort, therefore spending an hour thoroughly checking their CV can make all the difference.

It’s also a good idea to carry out criminal record checks on potential employees to reduce risk to your business. Stating this in the job advert may also save you time as this may deter unsuitable applicants from applying. To apply for a check on an employee, click here

During the interview, structure your questions properly so you get a good understanding of their ability and experience. Ask for examples, and then follow these up when you check references with previous employees.

Perhaps consider a working interview- a great way to ensure claims on a CV are accurate. Ask for targets, figures and KPIs from someone applying for a sales based role, or an explanation of certain projects and their role within it if they’re a management candidate.

Listen out for key words such as “we” or “I”. If they use “we” a lot, find out what their personal contribution was.

Ask the candidate to bring original documentation with them, and take note if they forget any and ask for these at a later date. You should also query if they leave out a particular recent employer as a reference, especially if this would be a relevant reference for the position they’ve applied for.

Finally, never get distracted by job titles. They often have nothing to do with how competent a candidate is, and may not even be the official title of their previous positon.

It is only by speaking directly to a potential employee that you will gain a good understanding of their character, how they handle different situations, and how well they communicate. None of these can be shown through a CV!


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