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Lying on Resume

 
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I don't think lying on the resume is a good idea at all!
I remember one of my colleagues going through a pretty rough and embarassing time after he got into the company where I work by making false statements on his CV.
U sure wouldn't want to be in his shoes!
This is how my boss always stared at him:
 
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Originally posted by Murali Mohan Mohan Murali:
I am working for one of the top 5 companies in India (It is a CMM Level 5 company). When I went to Singapore and came to US also, my resume has been modified by my manager accordingly the requirement.



I'm glad to here that CMM Level 5 companies aren't perfect. From what I know about Quality and process standards such as ISO 9000 and CMM, sending out falsified documentation to customers would take you down a notch or 2. Or do these level 5 companies lie about their level too?
 
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Originally posted by Kashif Riaz:


That is why I consider HR to be a bunch of incompetent idiots. They know nothing. You have every right to feel disappointed.

P.S. You have worked on some good open source projects and have good commercial experience. I'm pretty sure you could land offers here in London (you have all the core skills and use all the right tools which is rare). People with less credientials have landed good roles. Can't speak for the US though.

[ April 05, 2005: Message edited by: Kashif Riaz ]




Kash, I don't think so. I had a problem until I got my permanent residence visa - and I already had a UK work visa! This can change if the job market is hot enough - but in my judgement it isn't hot enough. Not now....
 
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Originally posted by Murali Mohan Mohan Murali:
But for the sake of money companies are "projecting" us to keep us in front of client. So there is no mistake in "projecting" ourselves as long as we r able to fulfill the requirement.



Two wrongs doth not make one right.
 
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ok, there has been some bashing abt what i said. let me try and explain what kind of lying I am speaking abt. I am not speaking abt lying abt educational qualifications or lying abt certifications.
Lets say I am working on a J2EE project and making use of EJBs cuz thats the company decision and I have no control over it. I am fascinated and thoroughly convinced by Spring+Hibernate instead of EJBs, and do my own personal stuff using the same for personal gratification and technical growth. The deal is now I know Spring & Hibernate quite well. I see a job requirement calling for Spring/Hibernate. I wouldnt hesitate to say on my resume that on my current project, i am using spring+hibernate and not EJB. I lie bcuz I need the new job, and I am not a 100% cheat cuz I know what I am speaking abt; I would not get stuck at my new job. Now there are the honest folks who would recommend that I should say that thou I have been using EJB on the project, I have done my personal research and possess good knowledge on Spring & Hibernate. But this might not work in all cases. If the interviewer is a techy and knows how to judge you, this might work. But consider a non-techy interviewer or consider a company who is looking to adopt these frameworks, but dont have any interviewers who have knowledge on the same. In both cases, they will tend to select the person who says he has worked on these technologies on a live project (who might actually be lying, might just know the basic definition of spring and hibernate and nothing more) as opposed to somebody who says they have not used these in live projects, but on personal projects (and this guy might have sound knowledge of these technologies). So I think it is in my best interest to lie (when I know what I am speaking about) to grab the right opportunity, or else somebody else might snatch it away from me.


Originally posted by soniya saxena:
Fact of the matter is a vast majority of the people lie. And whats the big deal. If you can lie and then manage to handle it, why not? As somebody suggested earlier, when companies paint a rosy picture about their projects and finances to the candidate, why cant the candidate lie. Job is just a kind of business; you have to lie at times to take your career forward. If you dont lie, somebody else will lie and take away the job that you wanted.

 
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Most of the companies now have BACKGROUND Check , where they call up the HR of the respective companies which you put in your resume and they talk to your seniors under whom you had worked.



The last company I worked for would only give out the dates of your employment with them if someone called to check on you. That was it. No salary info, no speaking with previous managers, nothing except start and end dates. Managers were also not allowed to give references or speak to other companies about current or past employees.

Why? It was probably a CYA move to prevent people from sueing them over bad recommendations and such.
 
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Originally posted by soniya saxena:
So I think it is in my best interest to lie (when I know what I am speaking about) to grab the right opportunity, or else somebody else might snatch it away from me.



I personally don't want to work with people who have to lie to get a position. I like to work with honest people who are qualified for their jobs without having to lie about it. Nothing personal against you, it's just a general rule.

What I would do in the situation you mentioned is put on my resume the project I worked on using Spring/Hibernate if those were requirements for the position I was seeking. I wouldn't misrepresent that project, I would put down that it was open source, a personal project, or whatever. One thing people could do is write something useful using the technologies they want to get on their resume, and then open source it themselves. Then you could write on your resume that you've gained your Spring and Hibernate experience by working on whatever open source project you put out there if you think that is more to your advantage.

We can't control what other people do, only what we ourselcves do. In other words, I can't control if other people lie on their resumes to try and get a position, so I'm not going to worry about it. Instead I will control the things I can. If I don't think my resume is strong enough, I will do what I can to make it stand out from the rest... without lying. Maybe that means contributing to some open source project in my spare time in order to boost my skills. Maybe it means writing articles for community publications. There are plenty of ways to legitimately boost one's resume, but it takes work and is not as easy as just lying about it.
 
Jason Menard
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Originally posted by peter wooster:
Or do these level 5 companies lie about their level too?



I don't think they are necessarily lying about their level, however when I hear about all these CMM Level 5 companies, I'm a bit dubious in many cases. For one, is the entire company certified Level 5, or is there just one division with that level certification? Companies often claim the former, when in fact the latter is more often the case. Did the company simply buy their rating? When was the last time the company was appraised? Are they flat out lying? These claims are often quite difficult for a company looking to contract development offshore to verify.

Here's an interesting article on the subject:

http://www.cio.com/archive/030104/cmm.html
 
soniya saxena
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I wouldn't misrepresent that project, I would put down that it was open source, a personal project, or whatever.
jason, i already explained the case you are speaking about wherein i say that i worked on a personal project. but the deal is many interviewers wouldnt care for a personal project.

We can't control what other people do, only what we ourselcves do.
unfortunately, you live in a world where there are lots of people who would do what you dont like, and you may have to compete with them to grab a particular opportunity. And if the interviewer is a person like what i described in my earlier response, you would end up losing the opportunity. You might say that "hey, i dont really care cuz i wouldnt want to work for a company where the interviewer does not know how to judge people", but think again, it could be that this is a really great company, but the interviewer was lame.

Its easy to speak abt a perfect world where employers and employees take pride in honesty and ethics, but that is not what you find out there. And again, I am speaking abt a moderate form of lying, wherein you are qualified for something, and you have to manipulate your resume here and there to bring it out.

Now let me ask all the ultra-honest guys a question. Let us consider the US market. The economy is still in shambles. Getting a job is still a problem. Lets say you got laid off. You speak to this consulting company which has a position open with a client for Spring & Hibernate. Your previous project was on EJB, you have done this personal project at home on Spring & Hibernate and are confident about the same. The consulting company asks you to modify your EJB project to Spring/Hibernate. If you are very honest and ethical and refuse to do so, they wouldnt really care to get you an interview with the client cuz they have lined up quite a few people like me who are ready to manipulate their resumes, and mind you, I can clear the interview cuz I do possess the knowledge. Now, are you saying that you would rather stay honest and remain unemployed. What if you were on an H1 visa and got laid off, and this contract is life and death for you. Would you still choose to prefer honesty, and go back to your country.

Originally posted by Jason Menard:


I personally don't want to work with people who have to lie to get a position. I like to work with honest people who are qualified for their jobs without having to lie about it. Nothing personal against you, it's just a general rule.

What I would do in the situation you mentioned is put on my resume the project I worked on using Spring/Hibernate if those were requirements for the position I was seeking. I wouldn't misrepresent that project, I would put down that it was open source, a personal project, or whatever. One thing people could do is write something useful using the technologies they want to get on their resume, and then open source it themselves. Then you could write on your resume that you've gained your Spring and Hibernate experience by working on whatever open source project you put out there if you think that is more to your advantage.

We can't control what other people do, only what we ourselcves do. In other words, I can't control if other people lie on their resumes to try and get a position, so I'm not going to worry about it. Instead I will control the things I can. If I don't think my resume is strong enough, I will do what I can to make it stand out from the rest... without lying. Maybe that means contributing to some open source project in my spare time in order to boost my skills. Maybe it means writing articles for community publications. There are plenty of ways to legitimately boost one's resume, but it takes work and is not as easy as just lying about it.


[ April 12, 2005: Message edited by: soniya saxena ]
 
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Originally posted by soniya saxena:
So I think it is in my best interest to lie (when I know what I am speaking about) to grab the right opportunity, or else somebody else might snatch it away from me.



What if the company who is hiring/interviewing you wants to talk to your previous managers about your work, project etc? In that case you might get caught lying or would you give your friend's name in that case and tell him to lie?
What if person who can snatch the opportunity away from you is much more qualified then you? I would not be able to sleep for many nights if I lied and got a job, How can I work with my co-workers 8-10 hours a day, when in the back of my mind I know what I did to get this job, but that is just me.
 
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Originally posted by soniya saxena:
[qb] [qb]We can't control what other people do, only what we ourselcves do.
Now let me ask all the ultra-honest guys a question. Let us consider the US market. The economy is still in shambles. Getting a job is still a problem. Lets say you got laid off. You speak to this consulting company which has a position open with a client for Spring & Hibernate. Your previous project was on EJB, you have done this personal project at home on Spring & Hibernate and are confident about the same. The consulting company asks you to modify your EJB project to Spring/Hibernate. If you are very honest and ethical and refuse to do so, they wouldnt really care to get you an interview with the client cuz they have lined up quite a few people like me who are ready to manipulate their resumes, and mind you, I can clear the interview cuz I do possess the knowledge. Now, are you saying that you would rather stay honest and remain unemployed. What if you were on an H1 visa and got laid off, and this contract is life and death for you. Would you still choose to prefer honesty, and go back to your country.
[ April 12, 2005: Message edited by: soniya saxena ][/QB]



My advice to you is represent the new stuffs as best as you can on your resume while retaining the previous EJB projects. Misrepresenting what you did on your resume is not an automatic guarantee for an interview anyway; Also note that no recruiting firm that worths its salt would ask you to misrepresent yourself on your resume.
[ April 12, 2005: Message edited by: Anselm Paulinus ]
 
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I would like to remind everyone here, that Soniya Saxena is speaking for herself. She is NOT representative of India, Indians, Indian culture, subculture etc

There are many people who would and have returned to their home countries rather than be dishonest.

Having said that, I should also tell, there are many, in fact, all of the consulting firms (American) I have worked with, that ask me to doctor my resume. They just don't use the word "lie". They will say "highlight", "project", give it more "prominence". The typical request is: If one of the client requirements is Ant, and if I have used Ant in one project, they will ask me to put it in more than one. This probably is not in the same league as lying about technologies that you have never used. Regardless, I typically refrain from doing so, because I don't feel comfortable with it, and the idea of facing an interview with a doctored resume would make me so nervous I would not perform well enough anyways.
 
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Sonya said:

What if you were on an H1 visa and got laid off, and this contract is life and death for you. Would you still choose to prefer honesty, and go back to your country.


Life and death?
I know you would rather lie than return home, but would you rather die??
 
Sonny Gill
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Originally posted by soniya saxena:
Now, are you saying that you would rather stay honest and remain unemployed. What if you were on an H1 visa and got laid off, and this contract is life and death for you. Would you still choose to prefer honesty, and go back to your country.



Since when did having to return to your country become a 'life and death' situation?
Are you saying you would have starved to death if you didnt get that job? And where does the lying stop?
And what are you going to do when your kid comes back from school and tells you a lie to save his skin, because most other kids do the same?

Let me add though that I have nothing against you personally. There are a lot of people who would do what you have been saying, you just chose to admit to it whereas others would do it but never admit to it. But, really, there is no way you can justify lying to get a job.
 
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Originally posted by Sonny Gill:

There are a lot of people who would do what you have been saying, you just chose to admit to it whereas others would do it but never admit to it.



That's correct. Almost everyone does it. Some call it a "lie" others call it "smart working". It doesn't starts and ends at an interview level. It exists everywhere. Some do it to get a promotion, some to hide defects in code etc. etc.
You may need to have it in you if you want to be a President of nation or a CEO or a Marketing / Sales person. Certain situations / conditions do requires that kind of "lie" or "smart nworking" else the world is gonna make an a$$ of you.
At the end of the day it only boils down to how much you do it.

But the truth is almost everyone does .. and well if you say you don't ... you are probably doing it while saying you don't do
[ April 13, 2005: Message edited by: Varun Khanna ]
 
kayal cox
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Originally posted by Varun Khanna:


But the truth is everyone does ..



Really? I wonder how you got hold of that "fact"


and well if you say you don't ... you are probably doing it while saying you don't do



"Probably"!
 
Varun Khanna
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Originally posted by kayal cox:


Really? I wonder how you got hold of that "fact"
!



Edited the line.
"Exception proves a law"
[ April 13, 2005: Message edited by: Varun Khanna ]
 
Anselm Paulinus
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The bottom line is that recruiters ain't technical people; they are more of sales men who are out to sell and they figure out that doctoring ones' resume to match the requirements of a job enhances their ability to sell one, but that is not very true. Sometimes you do not need to have everything that the interviewer is looking for and you could still get the job, and you get to learn the new stuffs why on the job. Like I mentioned on my earlier posts, a recruiter submitting your resume is no guarantee for an interview talk more of a job, secondly I really do not think that hiring managers care much about what you did in the last five years per se; you only need to be likeable. Even if you have all the requirements and the hiring manager does not like your face; you are out. The market is rough right now and recruiters are increasingly been pressured to vet resumes before submitting so they in turn are putting pressure on job seekers in order to improve their chances of selling candidates, but we still have to keep our heads high and act like professionals in this industry.
 
Don Stadler
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There are ways to represent what you know without lying. For those skills which I've worked on at home I might put it onto the skills summary at the beginning but not in any job description in the experience section. If I've used them at all on the job it can go into the experience section of course. I've been known to list skills as 'light'.

All of these are implicitly invitations to the employer to 'ask me'. Lots of times skills are 'nice-to-have' rather than core requirements and even mentioning them without making heavy claims of deep expertise is enough to get you past the keyword filter at the recruiters without misrepresenting yourself.

Employers 'lie' too. The job I'm currently on had a skills list as long as your arm but basically you need solid core java, Oracle PL/SQL, and perhaps a bit of J2EE app servers. I've found use for my design & patterns knowledge because the code base is dreadful - but that's necessary to excell - not for the base job. The funny thing is that my PL/SQL probably wasn't that good - this job is helping me take it to the next level. But neither HR nor the hiring manager apparently didn't know what their real needs are. Pretty amazing.....
[ April 15, 2005: Message edited by: Don Stadler ]
 
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Originally posted by Anselm Paulinus:
... secondly I really do not think that hiring managers care much about what you did in the last five years per se; you only need to be likeable. Even if you have all the requirements and the hiring manager does not like your face; you are out.



Sadly, I think this is true.
Just from what I've seen in last 5 years.
I was never rejected if I had a face-to-face interview, yet my friend, who was much more qualified, was almost never offered same job after interview with the same people. And I think that's just because I'm more friendly and smiley, and as a woman make better appearance than men.
 
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Lying is lying, what part didn't you get?

If you ever want to work out a moral issue, turn the cards on yourself, and see if it is acceptable.

Is cheating on your wife acceptable? (Would I allow my wife to cheat on me?)

Should I lie on my resume? (Your a team leader hiring a person you need badly, but there are 300 candidates to choose from. You have very limited tme to make a decision. You know candidate 212 sitting across from you is lying. You gonna hire him/her?)


By the way, just because some companies may 'inflate' their earnings and so people assume this is some sort of acceptable behavior in the prospective employees, let me say just because somebody else did it, doesn't make it right (even if they temporarily profit from it).
-jeff walker
 
Don Stadler
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Originally posted by Anselm Paulinus:
for an interview talk more of a job, secondly I really do not think that hiring managers care much about what you did in the last five years per se; you only need to be likeable. Even if you have all the requirements and the hiring manager does not like your face; you are out.



It's a mixed market. If you have any weaknesses (too little or too much experience, don't fir the mold somehow) you may have a hard time finding work. 'Likeable' can help in some situations - in others it doesn't. It's good to be as likeable as you can be.

In a job market like this it's necessary to be pretty active if you are out of work. Generate as many interviews as you can and don't take any single interview too personally. You may have only a 10 or 20% probability of a hire on each interview. Don't be discouraged but recognize the reality. The hiring manager has his own agenda. He may be looking for a good fit with his team or possibly something else. He may even be doing duty interviews. It happens. Frustrating, but if you don't play the game you can't win.

Originally posted by Anselm Paulinus:
The market is rough right now and recruiters are increasingly been pressured to vet resumes before submitting so they in turn are putting pressure on job seekers in order to improve their chances of selling candidates, but we still have to keep our heads high and act like professionals in this industry.



I've had this happen several times. Sometimes the recruiter asks me to emphasize something which I know but don't emphasize on the stock resume. I cut my CV down to 2 pages recently and have been asked to add some things back in. I haven't been asked to lie yet - and don't expect to.
 
soniya saxena
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Originally posted by kayal cox:
I would like to remind everyone here, that Soniya Saxena is speaking for herself. She is NOT representative of India, Indians, Indian culture, subculture etc
U r being too defensive...nobody said anything

There are many people who would and have returned to their home countries rather than be dishonest.
Unfortunately, I never got a chance to meet such a person . I have just seen people desperate to stay back in the US at any cost.

Having said that, I should also tell, there are many, in fact, all of the consulting firms (American) I have worked with, that ask me to doctor my resume. They just don't use the word "lie". They will say "highlight", "project", give it more "prominence".
A stinking rose by any other name smells as bad

This probably is not in the same league as lying about technologies that you have never used.
Who defines the boundaries? And I am speaking abt technologies that I have used (if you care to read my message carefully).

Regardless, I typically refrain from doing so, because I don't feel comfortable with it, and the idea of facing an interview with a doctored resume would make me so nervous I would not perform well enough anyways.
There u go; thats the difference. I wouldnt feel nervous or uncomfortable like you cuz I know pretty well what I am speaking about and hence am able to perform pretty well.

 
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