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The Masks Applicants Wear to Hide Who They Are

Posted by Ryan Howard on Fri, Oct 19, 2018

Employees Mask Identity on Resume

Most people lie on their resume. The typical resume untruths are embellishments or exaggerations so the candidate sounds more impressive or more experienced than they are. Earlier this year, CareerBuilder reported that 45% of hiring managers can't find qualified talent so fluffing up credentials is happening more than ever. These resume white lies may not necessarily reveal a bad hire if the candidate is bright, hardworking and willing to learn. Some applicants, however, may be hiding who they really are and it's up to the discerning hiring manager to uncover the scary truth underneath .

Here's what you may find behind the masks some applicants wear.

The Fake Smiler

While this person appears fine at first, you may quickly realize their smiling face isn't genuine. When you ask questions about previous work experience, they badmouth their former employers. When you inquire how they handle stressful environments, they blame others for any difficult situations they were in. They complain at length about other employment experiences. Pay attention to the negativity this person brought into the room. Would your team respond well to it or would they bring everybody down?

The Excuse-Maker

This type of applicant may start the interview meeting by arriving late and filled with all manner of excuses why. Maybe you excuse their lateness, the first time, but soon find that they're late for a second interview or offer more reasons why they didn't return your call or send in their paperwork. While on the outset, it appears that this applicant does want your job, their behavior says something different. Pay attention to their actions for the real truth. Will you be able to trust them? 

The Con Artist

It can be challenging to pick up on the con artist candidate because they're good at what they do. Their resume may be on point and, in their interviews, they seem to be jovial, confident and even charismatic. The only way to really pull back the mask of a con artist is to do your due diligence. If their resume says they have expert experience around a set of skills, test them. If they say they're certified or licensed, check with the certification or licensing board to verify. Check their identity, education and employment history.  Call their references to learn more about their previous work history and, if possible, whether they left on good terms. 

Cost of a Background Check:  How Much Should You Pay?

What's Behind The Masks?

The reason you, as a hiring manager, want to pull the mask from your applicants is to protect your business from negligent hiring claims or employee turnover.  A hire for your business represents you, both within and outside of your front doors. Negligent hiring claims can do enormous damage to your company reputation and employee turnover is expensive. An astute hiring manager may pick up on these masks during the hiring process. If not, a background check may uncover the real truth and protect your business from a bad hire.

Topics: Hiring and Recruiting, Employment Background Screening