CV fraud – an increasing problem
In the last 10-15 years the problem of inaccuracy in CVs has increased exponentially. Some sources claim that as many as 80% of CVs contain inaccuracies. (Risk Advisory Group)
In Australia the industries most affected are financial services (73%) , healthcare (63%), hospitality/ leisure (71%) and Information Technology (63%).
The problem affects senior roles as well as lower level jobs. There have been recent high profile cases in government departments and corporates.
Most inaccuracies are about employment history and educational qualifications, in roughly equal proportions.
Three quarters of the Inaccuracies are from the under 40 age group, with half of those from job applicants in the 25-32 year age group,
Many inaccuracies are in timelines and job titles. The Risk study found over 20% mis-stated job titles. Job titles changes to make them sound more senior in scope than they actually were. At the more severe end of the spectrum Virtual offices and fake websites are being used to create completely false work experience histories.
Educational qualifications may be listed with better grades than actually achieved. There is a thriving market for fake qualifications. It is thought there are close to 1000 providers of such fake qualifications.
A BBC documentary ( https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09ly731) shows how 3,000 fake qualifications were sold to UK-based buyers by a single company in 2013 and 2014. One buyer spent almost half a million pounds on bogus documents such as master’s degrees and doctorates.
Especially in small and medium enterprises a high proportion of organisations do not do effective background screening. Nor do they use selection methods that would quickly show up those without the skills they claim.
It is suggested that block chain technology may be able to be used in future to authenticate transactions such as educational certifications and skills. However someone still has to provide the authentication. For skills the current suggestion is this should be done by consensus or an ‘expert’. This is not a game changer nor does it allow for the limited shelf life of some skills in fast evolving industries like IT or disciplines such as medicine.
Meanwhile a competency management system can help to identify the specific skills and knowledge needed for each job role along. It provides flexible assessment methods that can support both on job audit and applicant selection.