From the Sunday Times:


Recruiter says more than half of all job-seekers embellish skills and fill out career gaps. By Gabrielle Monaghan

Tighe was caught out when grilled on her employment history by Sugar’s team.

Lorraine Tighe, the Westmeath-raised mother-of-two who missed out on tonight’s final of The Apprentice when she was fired by Sir Alan Sugar last week, is not alone in overstating her work history on a CV.

New research shows that more than half of Irish CVs contain fibs, with candidates claiming everything from the ability to speak fluent Japanese to spending a year backpacking in Australia when they were in prison. Tighe was accused of overstating her work history by a year. As part of its registration process, Grafton Recruitment interviewed 3,600 job candidates who sent in CVs over a three-month period.

Rowan Manahan, a careers consultant who sits on interview panels and checks out CVs for employers, agrees that job applicants are being generous with the truth. He regularly encounters “barefaced lying” on job applications and CVs. The most common lies are candidates turning diplomas into degrees and vamping up job titles to make it seem they had greater responsibility in a previous role.

“The candidates who are two years or so out of college will chance it quite a bit,” said Manahan. “With the degree of CV embellishment in the accountancy and legal professions, you’d think from the experience they put down, that they were running entire departments.”

“Making up a hobby is an invitation to interviewers to suck away at your own credibility. If you say you’re into sailing, rugby or martial arts when you’re not, there’s a good chance someone on the panel will share your interest. If they turn out to be a fanatic about sailing and your knowledge of the subject would fit on the back of a matchbox, you’ll look like a proper eejit.”

Manahan attributes such fabrications to people with a “huge sense of self-entitlement” who are used to being rewarded when they don’t deserve it. He acknowledges that record unemployment has encouraged job-seekers to do anything it takes to land a post. “These embellishments happen in a healthy market too, but it’s happening much more now,” he said. “In straitened times, anxious people will chance their arm more. But my mantra is that if you have to lie to get your foot in the door, it’s not the job for you.”

Full article here.