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Check References to Avoid Dishonest Candidates

NEWSLETTER • volume 1 • number 4

Fortune conducted research and published it in the article "New Crisis in Business Ethics". 50% of respondents under 30 cheated in college and 12-24% included false information on their resumé.

You might feel safe if you can review a candidate's college transcript, but even that may be doctored. Here is some advice on how to reduce record fraud.

The American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers has assembled guidelines to help prevent the use of fraudulent academic records. Some items to look for when screening a candidate's records:

Was the document mailed directly from the Registrar's Office in a sealed institutional envelope using an institutional postage meter?

Is there a registrar's signature and institutional seal?

Does the document have a recent date of issue?

Is the format of the transcript consistent with others received from the same institution?

Are the records submitted consistent with the person's employment background and with your personal knowledge of the candidate?


A busy HR professional may not want to take the time to double check references and records. But, in the long run, a thorough screening process will save you valuable time and money.