There is no shortage of finance and accounting professionals who lie on their resume. At the very least, they stretch the truth to fill in gaps and make themselves stronger candidates. People do it because they want to make themselves stand out and give themselves a better chance of getting a call for an interview.
There are countless ways you can lie on your resume. Many stretch the truth about previous roles and responsibilities, education, and skills. However, many of these lies could come back and hurt your job prospects if you get caught. It’s very difficult to back up lies once you get into the interview process, especially if the company chooses to call your references.
Job titles is perhaps the one area where people lie the most on their resume. In hopes of looking like a better candidate, many people will make their job title look better. They will make it look like a more senior role. Rather than changing the job title, make sure you outline your duties, experience, and successes in that role. It’s easy to get caught in a lie about your job title when your references get checked by a previous employer.
Some candidates will include academic and professional credentials as if they were complete when they were not. Whether you are a couple courses short or working on completing your diploma, be honest about it. It’s not difficult for companies to request proof. The same applies to professional certifications and courses.
It can be tempting to manipulate the numbers to make your job performance look better. Avoid overstating results. Expect companies to ask about this. They’ll want you to explain how you achieved the results, and it can be easy to get caught up in a lie during an interview. Use real numbers when communicating your achievements.
Perhaps the biggest unknown is whether or not a company would have called you for an interview if you hadn’t lied. You are potentially risking a great opportunity for a couple white lies. Is lying worth the risk? Not likely.
Get more finance job search tips and tricks by checking out these blog posts by our accounting and finance recruiters:
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As a member of the IQ PARTNERS Financial Services & Insurance practice, Steven specializes in the recruitment of Accounting and Finance professionals. He supports a large network of candidates as a LinkedIn Profile Expert and Career Coach. Steven helps organizations find great people. He helps people find their path.