Now, let’s be honest. We’ve all told a little fib or two on our resume from time to time. Added a little hyperbole. (Like saying that you were Time’s Person of the Year in 2006.) Blown a few things out of proportion. Reported a metric that might have been little off-topic.
It happens. It’s a first date. People want to seem more impressive to get in the door. And a little spit shining occurs. It’s a known factor.
And it used to be–back in the paper work-a-day world–people could take advantage. It was a great deal easier to pull off this ruse. I mean, unless you and a colleague were going to apply for the exact same job at exactly the same time, it would be nearly impossible to uncover the creative license in action.
But in this day and age, that is no longer the case. In this day and age, the employer can see your current resume, past versions of your resume, not to mention all the versions of your resume floating around LinkedIn and Monster and HotJobs and Jobster and so on and so on–and all of those resumes that come into the mix for the hiring decision. (At least, they do when I’m hiring.) Not only that, but they can compare those resumes against the resume of your peers who were working with you at the same time. As well as all the various versions of that person’s resumes.
Long story short, access to information makes adhering to the truth a requirement.
It’s something about which to think.
So why the rant? For the final reason not to do this: Your peers can see the resumes you’re posting.
You see, I’ve recently encountered a peer who–according to this resume research–apparently, did exactly the same job I did at exactly the same time I did.
Now, when push to come to shove, I’m confident that my resume holds water, and shame on the employer who is fooled by this.
But it still hurts. It hurts my feelings. And it hurts my willingness to recommend this person. And, in the long run, it hurts this person.
If the person had contacted me directly and said, “Look. I need a new gig. Can you help me out?” I likely would have helped. Now, not so much.
Professionally, I’m sure it will inflict little damage, for either party. But personally, it has completely unnerved me. It upset me. Hence, my tantrum.
Have you ever had this happen to you? How did you handle the situation? I’d love to hear about it. In the meantime, I’ll just sit here and fume.