We’ve all been tempted to exaggerate our skills or experience, but would you ever actually do it on a resume?
If you’re a boomer, probably not. Only two percent of boomers said they had lied on a resume compared to 11% of their millennial counterparts, a new survey by GoBankingRates shows.
The main reason for lying? Lack of work experience or gaps in employment. Of those who said they had lied on a resume, 38% said it was about their work experience, and we can guess it’s not because they had too much of it or were overqualified.
The second most popular reason was employment dates — 31% admitted to fudging their dates of employment to cover up any gaps in their work history. Other reasons include job title, references, college education, and a previous role’s responsibilities.
Jenny Foss, a job search strategist, certified professional resume writer and blogger at JobJenny.com said that “truth-stretching” is far more common than outright lying. “It’s rare that I encounter someone who completely fabricates something on their resume,” she noted to GOBankingRates.
This correlation — between millennials and fibbing — might just come down to age. Boomers have had a chance to accrue more work experience, and therefore have fewer reasons to stretch the truth.
But maybe there’s something to this generational divide: The majority of millennials who did lie didn’t regret it. Seventy-three percent responded saying they didn’t feel guilty, with 55% admitting they would probably lie again.
And interestingly, 28% of the total group surveyed thought that half of the population had lied on their resumes, while 40% thought some (but fewer than half) had lied.
But on the bright side, only 5% of the total 1,003 people surveyed said they had ever falsified information on their resume.
This might be a small problem that impacts only a fraction of the U.S. population, but it doesn’t change the fact that when it comes to truth about their bona fides, boomers come out on top.