The Chicago Employment Law Blog

FindLaw Poll: People Pad Resumes, It Hurts

Here at FindLaw, we’re not just excellent explicators of existing law. We don’t just react to news stories. We also do original research.

One of our recent polls by asked readers whether or not they “padded” their resumes.

Padding, in this case, means more than adding a series of adjectives to your job description. It would probably be more like what the Yahoo! CEO did before he was canned.

Out of all of the respondents, 8 percent of Americans admitted to embellishing or exaggerating information on their resume.

Out of those, 36 percent said the discrepancy was discovered, 27 percent said they subsequently lost their job, and 3 percent said they were never even offered the job after their creative flare was discovered.

It's common knowledge that this soul-sucking economy has left many unemployed or underemployed. In addition to the statistics in the daily paper, there's unemployment discrimination, discriminatory background checks, and any number of reports of employers taking advantage of the economy and the desperation. If in doubt, just skim our Chicago Employment blog.

Even still, with the Internet and social media becoming ever more a part of our lives, it's becoming easier and easier to discover those little white lies.

"With the Internet, employers now have more means to verify information on a resume," said Stephanie Rahlfs, an attorney and editor with "[P]resenting false personal or professional information to an employer is grounds for termination. Our survey found that when someone provides false information on a resume ... the most common result is the loss of a job."

Though it may seem worth it to submit that little embellishment and nab that dream job, it won't be worth it when you are fired. Even if they keep you on, your reputation is toast. And who knows, perhaps without the lie, you would have gotten the job anyway. If you're going to roll the dice, you might as try for double sixes with integrity.

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