Hiring Alert: 88% of Employers Find Misrepresentations in Resumes

May 13, 2016

Employee resumes are very likely to contain misrepresentations and candidates’ job histories and education backgrounds aren’t what they seem, according to a survey of recruitment and human resource professionals.

According to a survey by global background check firm HireRight, 88 percent of employers screening their potential hires uncovered a misrepresentation on a resume while 84 percent reported that verifying previous employment history and education credentials uncovered issues that would not have been found otherwise.

HireRight said it surveyed 3,500 human resources, recruiting, security and management professionals.

According to the 2016 HireRight Employment Screening Benchmark Report, workers are increasingly mobile and finding top talent in a competitive job market has become a more complex undertaking.

“As businesses invest in expanding their employee base, increasingly looking to non-traditional employees to do so, it is more important than ever that they institute a thorough screening process to bring in the most qualified candidates,” said Mary O’Loughlin, vice president of global customer experience, HireRight. “Providing a positive candidate experience during this process has lasting implications for employee engagement, retention and, ultimately, a company’s brand.”

The survey identifies the most popular types of background checks:

  • Criminal and other public record searches (89%)
  • Identity (SSN validation, etc.) (77%)
  • Previous employment (64%)
  • Driving records (55%)
  • Education (50%)

As the workforce is changing, so too are background check practices. Employers are hiring more contingent, contract and temporary workers to fill their open positions, with 81 percent of respondents screening this “extended workforce” – almost double those that screened this segment five years ago (48 percent).

More employers are screening candidates who have lived, worked or studied abroad. The report found that 19 percent of respondents have screened candidates with a non-U.S. backgrounds, up from 15 percent in 2015.

Medical marijuana laws are also causing employers to rethink their screening practices. Twenty-three states and the District of Columbia allow for the use of medical marijuana and four states allow recreational use. Only 5 percent of respondents reported having a policy for medical marijuana use but 39 percent said in 2016 they are considering one.

The survey revealed the majority of employers are finding it difficult to keep up with hiring needs, as 53 percent reported finding, retaining and developing talent is their top business challenge.

Irvine, Calif.-based HireRight specializes in online platforms and global services for employment verification, identity checks, criminal and experience background checks, drug and health screening, e-Verify compliance and executive intelligence.

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