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Job-seekers prepared to lie about interests, but more wary on work experience


According to new research, candidates are twice as likely to stretch the truth about their personal hobbies and interests than about their work experience. The survey, by Office Angels, shows job-seekers increasingly believing that facts that could possibly be checked might well be, so the majority avoid making false statements about work experience (60%) and academic results (55%).

Private lives are a different matter, with 80% expressing a willingness to embellish, exaggerate, elaborate and lie. And 75% of employers said that this category could make a significant difference to a candidate’s employment prospects, which would suggest that telling a tall tale or two could tip the balance. However, anyone considering creating a sophisticated fantasy life on their CV should think about the possible negative reactions. The survey showed that five most common hobbies listed all had possible hidden flaws:

Extreme sports: Are they trying too hard to appear dynamic? If true, could be too much of a risk-taker?

Arts (reading, opera, dance, theatre): May be creative and sociable, but could just be trying to look intellectual.

Cinema: Depends, a laddish Tarantino fan, or an arty European cinema obsessive?

Traveller: Life and culture knowledge, or idling in the sun?

Socialising: A people person, or out on the lash all night and fit for nothing in the mornings?

The issue becomes more relevant when you consider one other finding: 78% of respondents said they were considering a job move in 2002.

2 Responses

  1. Exagerating hobbies/interests/life experience
    I am not surprised that candidates are exagerating their hobbies/interests. I have now found a fulfilling job but for some time I found recent interview techniques requiring you to come up with some exciting/interesting life experience to reflect or use during interview. For some candidates with busy family lives this may be difficult so why not create something to enhance your interview?

  2. well……..
    If those surveyed lie on their cv (80%) how many lie in surveys? i suggest redoing the survey and ammending as appropriate

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