Remember the old joke, you can tell when they are lying because their lips are moving? Selling Power provides this article which opens with this statement:
Did you know that 50 percent of candidates lie on their resumes? (This includes people who omit things, stretch the truth, and those who outright lie.)
That seems optimistic to me. This lying problem is rampant in hiring as we have seen first-hand. I think candidates believe they can state things that are difficult to verify with the legal restrictions in this country. How can you verify that they turned around a territory? How do you know they were the lead person on a large account? There are ways, but it takes more time and effort than most hiring managers are willing to expend.
I did like this suggestion from the author:
Another way to encourage and check honesty is to conduct comparative interviews with the candidates. Using this process allows you to get many different viewpoints about candidates. Let candidates know upfront that several people will interview them and compare notes. After the interviews, look for any discrepancies, overstatements, omissions, or lies about work experience.
This is the right approach since it is difficult even for the most cunning liars to maintain their stories over multiple sessions and people. We always encourage multiple people participating in interviews from group interviews to follow-up individual interviews. Do not underestimate the value of this approach.
Lastly, I personally prefer this approach:
Finally, Halford says to state questions like you would “essay” questions, not “interrogation” questions. “When you get someone to just talk, you will learn more about him or her,” he explains. “You will gain more from asking four ‘essay-like,’ open-ended questions than 20 closed-ended or interrogative questions.”
I have seen many interrogations and they are absolute rapport killers. I take the approach of building rapport so you can have a more open discussion. If the candidate is comfortable, they will talk more openly and, in effect, more honestly. Don’t drill them with rapid-fire, cold questions. Find some common ground, share a personal story and start with an open-ended question.