With millions of Americans faced with unemployment due to the economic impact of COVID-19, the competition for a limited number of job openings has become fierce. Even as the economy begins to reopen and new jobs emerge, there are still a lot of people vying for the same positions. This can make it incredibly tempting to lie on your resume in order to stand out in the crowd and make yourself more marketable.

Resist the urge. Not being honest on your resume may give you an edge in the beginning, but it can quickly come back to haunt you and even jeopardize future job opportunities. Stick to the truth and have faith that your education, experience, skills, and accomplishments will be enough to show why you deserve an interview.

Here are just a few reasons why lying on your resume is a bad idea:

  • It is easier than ever for employers to verify information.

The Internet provides a wealth of information right at an employer’s fingertips. In addition to running a background check, they can look through search results, social media, LinkedIn, and other resources to learn more about you. It’s incredibly possible that they may find conflicting information to what you reported and immediately put your resume in the ‘no’ pile or question you about discrepancies. Even if it doesn’t surface right now, it may in the future, and you could be terminated.

  • A potential employer may check with references you didn’t provide.

Many employers will ask for a list of references, and you may have cherry-picked the best-of-the-best who will give you a glowing review or even lie for you. But what about when an employer seeks out connections you didn’t provide? These people have no idea what you did or didn’t say on your resume, so they’ll be honest in their replies. Or, the potential employer may not use the number you provided (which was actually a good friend who was going to pretend to be a former boss) and instead call the company directly and ask to speak to the person you listed or someone else they want to hear from. Once again, this can become an awkward situation and present you in an unfavorable light.

  • You may get caught red-handed.

It doesn’t hurt to embellish your skills a little bit, right? Wrong. If you say you’re an expert at Oracle or Salesforce and your new employer assigns you a task using these skills, what happens now? You may not be able to fake your way through or learn on the fly. Then you will be forced to admit that you lied about your abilities. This can be especially troublesome if you lied about a key qualification for the job.

  • Dishonesty can tarnish your reputation.

Let’s say an employer doesn’t find out until later that you lied on your resume, but they decide not to fire you over it. Chances are, they’ll be keeping a close eye on everything you do and wondering what else you may have lied about, or how honest you’re being with clients or the work assigned. You’re putting your entire reputation in jeopardy.

  • Lying can affect future job searches.

If you are terminated for lying on your resume, it can become a major obstacle to overcome in the future. It is unlikely that your previous employer will give you a five-star review, and it will likely be revealed why you were fired. This can make future employers think twice about hiring you because your honesty, integrity, and ethics can come into question.

Even if you feel like everyone fibs on their resume, stand strong and have a clear conscience knowing that you did not, and therefore have nothing to hide or remember. The professionals at Grammar Chic can help you craft a resume that captures your strengths and accomplishments – honestly – and aligns with the type of roles you’re seeking. Contact us today at resumewriting@grammarchic.net or by calling (803) 831-7444 to learn more and schedule a consultation.