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How to spot resume red flags

The emergence of remote and hybrid work models as the new workplace normal has created both opportunities and obstacles for employers. One obstacle, during the talent acquisition phase in particular,  became a major hurdle in 2021: The fraudulent resume. In fact, according to CareerBuilder, 3 out of 4 hiring managers say they found fraudulent claims on a resume.

Why candidates are presenting false facts on their resumes

It doesn’t come as a surprise to find that the the last 24 months took a huge toll on global jobs. In fact, a recent report by the UN’s International Labour Organization (ILO) finds 225 million full-time jobs were lost globally in 2020 – that’s a number approximately four times greater than the number of jobs lost during the 2009 global financial crisis. 

With these numbers, it also doesn’t come as a surprise that employers and staffing agencies are noticing an increase in the number of fraudulent resumes they’re receiving – even amid a time where individuals are re-evaluating work priorities.

Where to spot resume red flags during talent acquisition

Employers and staffing agencies can perform reference checks and social media audits, yet the information below will help you drill down into a candidate’s resume to spot the red flags of a potentially fraudulent one.  

Lack of locational details 

It’s common for fraudulent resumes to lack identifiable location details. This means any details like the candidate’s full address or locations of the organizations the candidate claims to have worked with.  

Are there organizations listed that have no known brick and mortar office location before the pandemic? If the candidate is listing only remote opportunities, you may want to dig into the physical office locations of these roles or projects. 

No last name 

If the candidate does not list his or her last name on their resume, it could indicate that he or she does not have the skills and experience they claim, and if the full name is searched online or in an ATS, it would not produce the real candidate in the results. 

Lack of a LinkedIn presence 

LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional networking platform, and if your candidate isn’t on it, there may be a reason. And one of those reasons may have to do with the fact that he or she does not want to publicly list a work history that does not exist. 

Similarly, if your candidate does have a LinkedIn profile, but their work experience listed doesn’t align with what’s written on their resume or they lack connections from the organizations they claimed to work with –  this also may indicate counterfeit claims.  

Education dates 

The candidate lists an accredited university or professional designation program; however, there are no dates associated with a graduation or completion date.

“Job hopping”

When sourcing for mid level roles and above, a candidate’s resume should demonstrate a steady progression into greater responsibilities and expanding roles. If you’re looking to fill a full time position, resumes that consist of multiple full-time jobs in the same role that lasted only a few months may raise concerns over commitment and dedication. 

Only one big client name and unknown companies 

Often, fraudulent resumes will have one big brand client listed in their work experience section and then include several smaller or unknown organizations as well. This is one of the reasons why it is so important to conduct thorough reference checks before extending an offer.  

Not in the Applicant Tracking System 

If a candidate’s resume states that he or she has been engaging in contract work in Canada or the United states for years, yet you can’t locate him or her in Bullhorn or another Applicant Tracking System, it could be an indicator that the candidate has never worked in North America. 

A recent study finds that 78 per cent of candidates will be dishonest on their resume; however, highly trained recruiting teams should be able to spot the red flags before feeling the effects of a bad hire.  

The Voice of Talent: Return to the Office Report

Procom recently surveyed over 1,000 knowledge workers to discover how and where they prefer to work as offices re-open across North America.  

The Voice of Talent Report offers actionable insights into what workers expect in relation to mandatory vaccinations, remote work preferences, The Great Resignation, COVID-19 safety measures and more.

Access your complimentary copy to discover how to attract talent in 2022:

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How to spot resume red flags

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