Excerpted from an SHRM blog by Dana Wilkie

When an employer as seemingly sophisticated as the White House can miss clues that someone has falsified his or her resume, it’s likely most employers could, too.

Taylor Weyeneth was recently demoted from his post as an administrative leader in President Donald Trump’s Office of National Drug Control Policy after an investigation revealed a lack of experience and misrepresentations on his resume.

According to The Washington Post, 24-year-old Weyeneth overstated his work at a New York law firm, where a supervising attorney said he “just didn’t show”; indicated that he had a master’s degree from Fordham University, even though administrators said he did not complete his coursework there; and lied about his previous experience with drug policy, among other falsifications.

“The competitive job market is certainly one of the factors at play here, with more candidates potentially trying to beef up their resumes to outshine the competition for desirable positions,” said Catherine Aldrich, vice president of operations at HireRight, an Irvine, Calif.-based background screening company. “Candidates are aware of what HR managers are looking for on their resumes. With the flood of applicants, they may assume HR managers aren’t going to follow up on every detail.”

Candidates, even at the most senior levels, are regularly embellishing their resumes, according to a 2017 report from HireRight. Eighty-five percent of the 4,000 survey respondents said they uncovered a lie or misrepresentation on a candidate’s resume or job application during the screening process—up from 66 percent five years ago.

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