Almost 100,000 job applicants have lied about qualifications in the past three years as they attempt to secure a job – and many are getting away with it as employers fail to check credentials before offering a contract, according to a new survey.
Many organisations only find out members of staff have lied on their application after they have started. Some HR professionals said they had dealt with at least five incidences within the last three years of employees not holding the qualifications they had claimed– the equivalent of around 100,000 job seekers.
Qualification checks also vary between companies. Nearly a third of organisations think checks can be waived if the candidate has previous experience in the role they are applying for. One in ten will waive checks if the candidate has been recommended by someone senior in the business.
Exaggerating qualifications such as degree results or modules can have serious repercussions – 37% of survey respondents said they would dismiss an employee if they discovered qualification results had been exaggerated. This increases to over half if a job applicant outright lies about qualifications they do not hold and is later found out.
More than half of HR professionals said that poor performance was the most significant risk from under qualified staff. Reputational impact was the second most important issue with more than one quarter (26%) of those surveyed listing it as their chief concern about hiring someone not properly qualified.
Organisations also face significant costs if they have to find a new recruit. Nearly 40% of companies had spent more than £10,000 in the last three years rehiring staff after employing someone who wasn’t properly qualified, with 9% of respondents said they had spent more than £40,000.