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13 September 2016

What is the actual cost of lying on your CV?

According to the latest data published by AXELOS Global Best Practice this week, almost 50% of companies have spent between £10,000 and £40,000 in the last three years re-hiring staff after employing someone who wasn’t properly qualified.

Further to this, the research also shows that in the last three years, 14% of HR professionals reported that they had handled at least five cases of candidates submitting fraudulent qualifications on their CVs. In the public sector this percentage jumps up to 18%.

So what are people lying about, why do they do it and who ends up paying for this at the end of the day? The current focus for AXELOS (who manage professional qualifications such as ITIL® and PRINCE2®) is to help reduce the number of instances of CV fraud and the cost it incurs for employers when they are recruiting staff with professional qualifications, particularly in the service management and project management space. These are areas where candidates can not only mislead employers around the qualifications they hold, but also about the practical experience required to make those qualifications valuable to an employer.

For example, how does an employer differentiate between project managers who have both been qualified in PRINCE2® for 2 years? Presumably they would look for evidence of how well the candidate has exercised their qualification in their work. However, CVs and resumes don’t always show you what you need to know in this respect, especially when companies are increasingly finding that some applicants can be economical with the truth.  

Surely it’s easy enough to just check peoples’ qualifications?

According to the research published, most companies simply don’t have the resources to check the qualifications of every candidate they come across, with some 35% of organisations believing that the responsibility for this should be with the recruitment agency. Even when the risks are well known, it is a lengthy and costly exercise that is not prioritised when recruiting into an organisation. Perhaps surprisingly, 48% of HR staff claim to not always verify a candidate’s qualifications, this includes professional qualifications such as PRINCE2® MSP® and ITIL®. Further to this, 1 in 20 admit to having never checked the validity of a candidate’s qualifications.

Survey results infographic

AXELOS Global Best Practice infographic

View the full infographic

On the surface this may seem surprising, but the reality is that it is often difficult to step back and view the impact misleading CVs and applications have on your organisation. For many HR departments, overcoming CV fraud and re-hiring is just a part of day-to-day work. Though as we now know, the average organisation is spending up to £40,000 a year on these challenges.  

This also presents a very real problem to the genuine candidates who work hard to use their qualifications and experience as a way to differentiate themselves and compete for the roles they want. When a business hires the wrong person based on false information, there is another more honest candidate losing out on that opportunity. It is a lose-lose situation for all involved. 

AXELOS is not just interested in digging up the dirt on CV fraud, it’s actively working on solving this problem. AXELOS has recently developed a membership programme which will help both recruiting companies and candidates alike. The professional membership offering is underpinned by a digital badge and a universal skills framework. It is specifically aligned to ITIL®, PRINCE2® and MSP®, which are the three of the most commonly taken qualifications for IT Service Management and Project/Portfolio Management professionals globally.

Membership is open to those who are both certified in any one of these qualifications or currently working towards becoming qualified. In addition to a rich collection of educational content and skills assessment tools, the stand out feature within AXELOS Membership is the digital badge. 

What is a digital badge and how do you get one?

Digital badges are relatively new to the market space, but picking up global attention pretty quickly, with companies such as IBM and Oracle now using digital badges as a core feature in their professional development methods. AXELOS has chosen to use digital badges to further accredit qualifications such as ITIL®, PRINCE2® and MSP®. So if you are working towards one of these qualifications, using your qualification to improve your career or searching for candidates with these qualifications, gaining a professional membership and digital badge from AXELOS is a great way to help you differentiate yourself from job competitors.

A digital badge validates a qualification as it has been awarded by the certification body, is a recognisable visualisation of the qualification and can be only be gained following further continuing professional development (CPD) efforts to ensure that the badge is relevant to you and your potential employer. It can be added to a CV, social profile, personal website or email signature as a way of providing ‘one-click verification’ for employers.

AXELOS has used relatively new technology to build a bespoke CPD tracker, skills assessment tool and content library, which helps you to plan, manage and track your professional development. Through the use of a highly focused skills framework, obtaining and keeping a digital badge is fixed around key developmental milestones.

For the candidate this means they can not only track their progress through learning methods like reading, work experience or training course, but they can also demonstrate this progress through sharing their digital badge. For employers, it’s the ideal solution to quickly checking qualifications and professional experience, which means no more lengthy background checks and no more budget breaking rehiring costs.

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