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Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  28 Jun 2010

RECRUITMENT: Technology Makes Stretching the Truth Riskier Than Ever

 





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Down sizing, high unemployment and increased competition on the job front can push candidates to chance their hand at CV embellishment, but the increasing reach of technology when conducting background checks means candidates are now less able to get away with untruths than ever before.

This is according to Debbie Goodman-Bhyat, MD of one of the country’s most prominent executive search firms, Jack Hammer Executive Headhunters, who says “Candidates do sometimes bend the truth, or even tell outright lies about their experience, but they should know, even when they’re headhunted, that due diligence and personal verifications will be conducted at some point in the process – and any misrepresentations are very likely to be uncovered”.

“Ongoing volatility and cost cutting in the corporate landscape is adding pressure on job seekers, who recognise that the competition for jobs is now tougher than ever. As a result, the temptation to over-promote oneself in order to land that job can be significant – but should be resisted at all costs”.

Goodman-Bhyat says that the ease of access to ‘networking’ technologies such as Google, LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter is becoming increasingly valuable, “We are using these tools more and more frequently to supplement the research we conduct within our large corporate networks - so to embellish your CV when fact verification is so accessible is downright foolish”.

“Furthermore, independent verification agencies are utilized in almost all professional appointments prior to extending an offer to a candidate, in order to ensure that the new employee has a ‘clean’ credit and criminal record, as well as accredited academic credentials. So these days it’s pretty tough to escape the scrutiny provided by technology – if used diligently.

On occasion loopholes do occur and organisations don’t always go through the recommended verification processes, for example South African Member of Parliament, Sicelo Shiceka, and his ‘Masters degree in political economy’ from the University of the Free State.

The falsification was discovered when a South African publication came across his CV on a website. When verified with the institution, his ‘masters’ turned out to be bogus.

“The risk of being caught out, and the damage to your reputation, is just too high. And reputation aside, embellishment can land employees in deep water in terms of not being able to cope with the inflated responsibilities they’ve talked themselves into”.


 
 
 
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