Reference checks are the most crucial for Human Resource (HR) managers while recruiting. However, a study found about 20-30 per cent of candidates fake their references causing a lot of trouble for employers.
With 70 per cent of HR managers rely on references, it becomes quite a problem when the credibility of the candidate comes into question due to a fake contact. The study by TimesJobs found that 58 per cent of employers always contact the references provided by the applicant for background checks.
“Often during reference checks some of these references put in a pale mention of the candidate,” says Sujaya Rao an independent HR professional. Fearing this, candidates give fake contacts who could put in a good word. This, however, is a misstep as 59 per cent of employers develop an unfavourable opinion towards the candidate.
“References lend credibility to an employee’s character,” says Zarin Bhathena, Senior VP and Head of HR, Wordline. If the reference turns out to be false in a check the trustworthiness of the employee is hampered. It could lead to termination of the candidate’s contract.
Also read | Why you should not fake your resume
Encounters with fake resumes are so common that about 10-20 per cent of applicants get rejected every month after reference checks.
“It is very important for the hiring managers to know the truth behind the resume,” says Sunil Goel, MD of GlobalHunt, “It is difficult to get the facts from the job seeker in a 1 or 2 hour long interview where the focus is also on other aspects, including – body language and personality, conducting reference checks seems to be the ideal method.”
References are vital for managers. The study says 40 per cent of employers find that it ensures better and informed hiring decisions, 30 per cent say it helps exclude applicants with inappropriate workplace behavior and 21 per cent say it helps them note the cultural fit of the candidate. The study was conducted taking into account over 650 recruiters across key sectors including IT, telecom, manufacturing, healthcare, retail, FMCG, consumer durables, travel and hospitality, BFSI, media and entertainment, infrastructure, BPO and ITeS.