Resume and the Lies

“Résumés are marketing tools designed to do one thing: make the phone ring,”

Mr. X applied in a small company and lied on his resume about his work gap. He got away with that lie. Mr. X was an ‘Exceed all Expectation’ performer. His professional life had indeed taken a plunge and he was enjoying his work.

Eventually, after a few years, his small company was taken over by another multi-national company. This new multi-national giant had a strict rule of carrying out background verification of each and every employee. It followed its own process to verify each employee of the newly added-organization.

Mr. X was extremely happy working for this big company. His promotion was due and was to be made head of his department. Unfortunately, he was couldn’t get promoted. Rather, what happened next was a nightmare for him.

The background verification report showed that Mr. X lied on his gaps. HR had a face to face meeting with Mr. X and he too couldn’t protect himself. He had forgotten what lies he had told years before about his gap and there was no evidence to support whatever he had mentioned in his resume.

The new company had to let go of Mr. X.

We only talk about the famous high-profile cases which get highlighted come – Former Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson, former Notre Dame football coach George O’Leary, David J. Edmondson, the former chief executive of RadioShack , anyone could be Mr X. At the highest point in their career, they were asked to step down, for the various lies in their resumes. They were just a few which made big news; there are many Mr. X’s at every level of the organizational ladder.

‘You tell a lie and the lie will get back at you.’

Resumes may be the key to be called for an interview, but lying in your resume might cost you your entire career. There are many people who leave a grey area between facts and fiction. Background verification has proved time and again that lying on resumes has become rampant.

According to a survey done by Forbes, the most common lies on the resumes are:

  • Hiding employment gaps
  • Bogus college degrees
  • Experience embellishment
  • Claiming higher salary from previous jobs
  • Raised grade point average
  • Language proficiency

At the end of the day, employees are nothing but investments. If they can’t be honest about themselves, they might not be the right kind of candidate a company is looking for. They might steal information from your company or even harm long-earned-goodwill of the company in minutes by misbehaving or with their wrongful acts.


Background verification is the answer for uncovering all the lies. With the increase in resume lies and goodwill and name of any organization at stake, there is no other option than a rigorous background verification process.

It’s a very old saying, ‘Honesty is the best policy’, but it still holds absolutely true till date. Probably it’s time to follow this proverb even if it gets difficult to get a job. It’s better to start late rather than giving all you have earned.


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