September 27, 2015

Rising instances of resume frauds even at senior levels make it imperative for Indian companies to realise the importance of employee verification, as a bad hire can be a “costly” affair for the company, experts say. Resume frauds have always existed, if not in terms of outright lies, but definitely in terms of misrepresentations about qualifications and job experience. Some of the common frauds often cited by job applicants include highlighting short-term diploma courses from premier institutes as main qualification and lying about dates of work experience. Moreover, people also produce false certificates on company letter-heads, including salary certificates, lie about bonuses earned and reasons for leaving previous jobs and produce false references — people who reinforce part of the lies.


“With intense competition for limited opportunities, people have started creating rogue resumes, lying about facts, hiding information or bloating up achievements. This goes right up to the senior-most levels,” executive search firm Grassik Search Director Rajeev Thakur said. Background screening company First Advantage Head, Marketing and Communications, Shreya Krishnan said: “It is not hard to get fake documents in India. There are close to 7,500 companies in India, which operate just for providing fake employment and educational certificates.”


According to experts, the answer to this problem lies in doing very incisive interviews for fact-finding by HR, speaking to personal contacts in previous organisations and if required, getting a 3rd party to verify the facts mentioned. “We have hundreds of calls going out to potential candidates every day and in more than 30 per cent of the cases, we know that the candidates have something to hide, prompting us to probe deeper. In fact, 20 per cent of these cases are exposed before commencement of new employment,” Spectrum Talent Management co-founder Vidur Gupta said.


Experts believe that factors like tight timeline and cost-cutting often tempt employers to go easy on checks and verification, but this might prove costly as a bad hire can be costly for the company. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, the cost of a bad hire to an organisation is five times the bad hires annual salary and hence, companies should focus on hiring the right talent to mitigate business risks. According to Q1 2015 Trends report from First Advantage, the discrepancy rate in BFSI continues to be high at 40 per cent followed by the IT sector at 27 per cent while the discrepancy percentage is highest in the age bracket of 41-50 years at 16.2 per cent.


“Solutions to this problem cannot be templated as one-size-fits-all. Each organisation needs to find its own solution and be firm on its implementation. The key is the implementation,” HR solutions provider WorkAmmo Founder Richard Cowley said.


This article, from the Press Trust of India (PTI) wire, appeared in The Economic Times, Deccan Chronicle, Asian Age, and NDTV Profit.