A quarter of employers in the UK withdrew at least one job offer in the past year after discovering someone had lied or otherwise misrepresented their application.
And, according to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development’s (CIPD) annual Recruitment and Retention Survey, nearly as many (23%) dismissed someone who was already in their post for the same offence.
The survey of the recruitment and retention experiences of 715 UK employers also asked how often they carried out various checks on candidates’ applications, and found that many employers do not carry out routine checks on the people they employ.
A quarter of employers do not always take up candidates’ references (although 90% either do so mostly or always); 20% of organisations either rarely or never check absence records, with a further 19% only doing so sometimes; 24% of organisations never (11%) or rarely (13%) check out academic qualifications, with a further 19% only doing so sometimes.
According to the survey, employers are likely to satisfy themselves about an employee’s application mostly on the basis of a check on their most recent employment history.
Rebecca Clake, recruitment adviser at the CIPD, said: “Employ-ers need to be careful. A strong economy and low unemployment means that many employers are struggling to find applicants. But there are risks that go with rushing in candidates to fill vacancies without making basic checks.
“If you don’t have rigorous pre-employment checks in place, you risk being a soft touch for people who are willing to be dishonest to get work or advance their careers.
Clake added: “The CIPD recommends that employers should always take up references to check facts such as qualifications and previous jobs held. But employers should also take care not to rely on subjective opinion with regard to competence or performance.”