Question: I wasn’t entirely honest on my resume. I wrote down that I knew a particular technique but I don’t actually know it, I’ve just heard of it. Now I’m feeling guilty. What should I do? ~ Rojirah M., Baltimore, MD
Answer: You have a few options after submitting a resume or application that has false or inaccurate information on it.
Do nothing: In my opinion, this really is not an option. Leaving your resume with false or inaccurate information on it calls into question your integrity and can have lasting negative effects on your professional reputation. The truth will usually come to light eventually It’s never a good idea to submit an application that’s not accurate, but if you do, you should correct it.
Withdraw your application: You can contact the employer and let them know that you would like to withdraw your name for this particular search. If the skill or technique that you thought you had is a vital part of the job, and you are no longer qualified for the position, withdrawing from this search may make the most sense.
Send an updated resume: Make the necessary corrections to the resume, and if applicable, update any details that have changed since the last time you submitted. If the skill or technique that you included on your resume is not one that is vital to the role, and you still feel like you are qualified for the position, then updating your resume is probably the thing to do.
Be aware that you may be asked about the incorrect information on the original resume at some point during the hiring process. Be honest about the mistake, but know that you could still be removed from consideration by the hiring manager.