I have spidey-senses that can tell me if someone is lying or fudging the truth on their resume. I mean if it doesn’t make sense, it doesn’t make sense and it’s probably false or fudged. It’s that simple to me.
This is by no means an exhaustive list. There are other signs, too. However, these are signs that almost 100% of the time are false….other signs are red flags and are not always indicative of a lie. I wanted to focus on the top three, in my experience:
1) Slash Titles
Unless you are a business owner where you have your title and function listed in your resume title, i.e. “President / Marketing Consultant” and you run a marketing consultancy, regular corporate HR departments do not issue formal slashed titles. In almost all cases where a slash title exists, the candidate added words to the title to make it reflect what they did (or what they think they did) and was not an HR-issued title.
2) All the percentages end in 5’s and 0’s
Even in a perfect world, percentages do not all end in 5’s and 0’s. So when I read a resume where all sales achievements end in X5% or X0% or all expense cutting efforts result in a X5% or X0% savings, I believe a candidate’s fiction writing abilities have entered the picture. Yes, I believe you are probably making it up when they all end in 5’s and 0’s. Life doesn’t work that way.
3) Ghost Consulting Roles
When you say you have been consulting, but list no companies or experiences outlining the consulting you did, I call BS. If you didn’t work, then own it and explain what you did do. Recruiters are way on to it when you say “consulting” nowadays. They want to know where, when and how.
List the truth authoritatively on your resume. Here’s how: http://resumecheatsheet.com.
Written by Lisa Rangel, Executive Resume Writer