Can Lying On Your C.V. Send You To Prison?Posted: 29th of May 2015 by
When it comes to applying for a job experts say that you should be altering your C.V. to suit the role you are going for. It seems that a little ‘creative wording’ is encouraged to make yourself look slightly better to a prospective employer. Emphasising certain facts over others seems to be a regular practice, but when taken to a logical conclusion, such ‘creativity’ can land you in serious trouble. In fact, you can end up serving time in prison as a result of lying on your C.V.!
Take the case of Wade Jordan, who was jailed after claiming he had an MA in human resource management from Manchester Metropolitan University in order to land a HR job at biotechnology firm, Qiagen’s. His dishonesty continued as he went on to swindle the company out of nearly £50,000 in fraudulent expense claims. As a result, Jordan was sentenced to three years behind bars, and while the financial fraud was probably more of a factor than the CV, lying on your CV is illegal, and also counts as fraud in its own right.
More worryingly, there is clearly a fairly widespread problem with people making claims that aren’t true when applying for jobs. A recent survey showed 11% of people admitted to having falsely claimed to have a degree, while a full 40% said they had exaggerated their grade to get a job! In fact the Higher Education Degree Datacheck (HEDD) find that around a third of people embellish or increase their academic qualifications when applying for a job.
However, get found out and you could lose your job, as was the case with barrister, Dennis O' Riordan who decided his perfectly good degree from the University of East Anglia was not high-profile enough, and instead claimed he graduated from Harvard and Oxford.
With many companies taking qualifications at face-value, and not checking to see if they are real or not, it seems like many people are happy to tell lies when applying for work, without really realising the potential consequences.
Increasingly, checks are being made into applications for work, to make sure the qualifications people claim are actually true. Plus, as the world becomes more tech-savvy and joined-up, the chances of getting away with a fraudulent C.V. are surely decreasing all the time.
It is fine to focus on certain skills or experiences over others when applying for a job – in fact it is recommended. You might not need to mention the paper-round you once did when looking for an office job, for example. But you should certainly draw the line at telling lies – especially if you want to keep your job – and potentially your freedom!
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