IT Resumes: Lies, Half-truths and Embellishments

HR pros and hiring managers encounter candidates of all kinds and any lie on a resume is a definitive red flag. However, all lies are not created equal.

As the old saying goes, a lie may take care of the present, but it has no future. Nowhere is this truer than when conducting a job search. In a hyper-competitive talent market, it can be tempting to embellish your work history, exaggerate your IT skills or even claim to hold advanced degrees if it'll give you an edge over other job seekers. Unfortunately however, even if these lies manage to go unnoticed at first, they'll many times catch up with; potentially landing you back among the ranks of the unemployed with a bad reputation according to Tracy Cashman, senior vice president and partner of Information Technology Search at WinterWyman.

"The unemployment rates have been the lowest since 2008, but the job market is still competitive enough to make some job seekers feel like they need to embellish their resumes. In some cases, for the long-term unemployed, they can feel desperate and they're only thinking in the short-term, not the long-term impact of what'll happen if they're found out," says Cashman. A recent CareerBuilder survey found that 58 percent of the 2,188 hiring managers and HR professionals have caught a lie on a candidate's resume; 33 percent of these employers have seen an increase in resume embellishments in the post-recession era.

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