We’ve all heard the stories – a senior executive fools everyone and somehow gets top jobs based on fake work experience or educational qualifications.
We think we’d never fall for it, but it’s incredibly easy to be the ones fooled. Just ask the National University of Singapore (NUS), Peking University, and the South China University of Technology.
Professor Chen Chunhua was a visiting professor at the NUS Business School, the Dean of Beijing International MBA Business School at Peking University, and a professor and doctoral supervisor at the School of Business Administration of the South China University of Technology before being called out for faking her academic credentials and employment history.
Chen was found to have provided details of a doctorate from a fake university in Ireland and had claimed to be a “military adviser” for tech company Huawei but Huawei denied this and stated publicly that they had no knowledge of Chen.
Chen had even previously been included in Fortune’s China’s 25 Most Influential Businesswomen Leaders list for four consecutive years from 2015 to 2018.
The boldness of Chen’s lies and fraud, combined with the long period of time that she was able to get away with those lies, shows just how easy it is to miss a major issue when recruiting new staff.
Recruitment is a busy time and there is often significant pressure to fill roles and onboard staff quickly. Conducting thorough background screening and taking the time to genuinely investigate candidates’ credentials inevitably starts to take a backseat.
But we guarantee that extra time spent on background screening is worthwhile. Background screening saves organisations time and money in the long-run, and also ensures that genuine candidates with real experience and knowledge are filling roles.
As can be seen in the case of Chen, even Fortune magazine and prestigious universities can be duped by failing to take the time to conduct proper checks.
We also see how the effect can quickly snowball – once a fraudulent candidate gets entry into one role, future organisations mistakenly rely on the belief that the original employer would have conducted thorough checks and offer new employment, allowing the candidate to build their experience – all while the original lies remain uncovered.
One way to guard your organisation against these fraudulent individuals is to conduct thorough background screening and checks on all candidates.
For senior roles in particular, we recommend implementing a comprehensive suite of background screening that includes education checks, reference checks, social media checks, and adverse media checks, to ensure that candidates genuinely hold the experience and education they claim to have and to identify any red flags before an offer of employment is made.
In this modern world of “always-on” social media and news websites, many potential issues can be identified quickly by conducting thorough social media checks and adverse media checks.
Implementing a comprehensive background screening process will help your organisation to:
- ensure that candidates have the knowledge and experience to fill the role they are hired and paid for
- save money, time and headache further down the line if an employee’s fake credentials are exposed, and
- protect your organisation from negative media exposure and associated concern about the quality of your services.
Sterling RISQ are experts in offering background screening services in the Asia-Pacific region. We have significant experience in tailoring background screening packages for all roles and organisation types. Protect your business from fraudulent candidates – get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss a background screening package suited for your organisation.