Written for EO by Lucy Grant, freelance content manager and writer.
As an entrepreneur, your success is often dependent on the individuals you employ to bring your vision to life. Unfortunately, not all job applicants are as honest as we would like them to be. In fact, as many as 85% of employers declared that they have caught applicants lying on their resumes or job applications according to a 2017 employment screening benchmark report by HireRight.
So, how do you protect yourself when interviewing for key roles? Look out for these common lies as you start building your team.
Top Lie #1: Exaggerated past experience
If something seems too good to be true, it probably is. It’s believed that as many as 34% of all resumes contain inconsistencies pertaining to previous work experience. Job applicants tend to stretch past employment to reduce gaps in their resumes. Freelancers tend to fabricate contracts to make themselves appear more suitable for a position.
Take the time to check previous employers listed and spend a few minutes to call references. A few minutes spent on the phone today will save you time and money in the long-run.
Read more on hiring best practices from Octane.
Top Lie #2: Concealing a criminal record
Individuals who are trying to hide criminal records may alter their dates of birth or names ever so slightly. Doing a thorough and professional background check can help you identify any criminal issues. Once again, it’s important to spend the time reviewing your top candidates.
What to look for in the interview
If an applicant’s credentials look good on paper, the interview process presents you with a second chance to confirm that the individual is being honest.
During the meeting, take note of how the applicant acts. Is he or she struggling to make eye contact? Does she appear nervous, or fidgety? Is he avoiding answering questions directly? Individuals who are genuine high performers will be eager to share specific details about their experience. If you suspect that someone is less than truthful, try rephrasing a question to see if the answer remains consistent.
Trust your instinct
As an entrepreneur, you want what is best not only for yourself but the community as well. If your venture is focused on on helping children, the elderly or animals, it’s critical that you hire people who are qualified and caring.
Today, there are many organizations that use their success to help communities. The fashion industry, for example, has found numerous ways to help children. If you are hoping to delve into social entrepreneurism, be sure that new employees won’t damage your reputation or your cause.
While effective research and background checks will help to eliminate most of the less-than-honest job applicants you come across, it’s important to always trust your instinct.