Job seekers in South Africa face high levels of unemployment and with limited access to tertiary education, CV fraud has reached epidemic proportions.
While the majority of CVs contain ‘white lies’ - such as inaccurate dates or timelines, inflated job titles or embellished achievements - others contain gross qualification or experience fabrications.
A shocking propensity for blatant qualification fraud has been exposed and splashed across newspaper front pages over the last few years involving individuals who hold top management positions and are often decision makers in their respective fields.
In July 2014 former SABC board chairwoman, Ellen Tshabalala tendered her resignation after she falsely claimed that she held a BComm and postgraduate diploma in labour relations. Unfortunately a similar spate of scandals involving prominent people have continued to emerge.
The Statistics from South Africa’s largest background screening company, Managed Integrity Evaluation (MIE), paint a worrying picture:
- From 2010 to 2012 a gradual - but steady - increase in the number of matric certificates that indicate risk during their verification process, grew by 1% every year from 21% in 2010.
- Of the 2.3 million checks conducted in the private and public sectors in 2012, 16% did not disclose a criminal record or had listed fake qualifications on their CV.
- In the past five years (2009 – 2014), qualification fraud in South Africa has increased by a staggering 200%.