Candidate resume discrepancy trends across Asia Pacific

Candidate resume discrepancy trends across Asia Pacific

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Candidate discrepancy rates across APAC (which includes Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore) have improved modestly from 16% in 2017 to 15.1% in 2018.

These discrepancy rates are marked by when the information provided by a candidate (across five typical categories) does not match records, i.e. in cases of credit, criminal, education, employment, or professional records.

This is per a new study by HireRight which includes an audit of checks conducted by organisations across APAC in 2017 compared to 2018, which also found a 17.7% increase in the total number of screenings completed year-on-year.

Below we have a breakdown on three key markets covered in the report:


Singapore’s overall discrepancy rate stood at 18.3% in 2018 – down from 20.1% the year before. Employment checks were found to be the most common type of check, growing by 24.1% from 2017 to 2018. Meanwhile, employment discrepancies fell by 2.5%.

Speaking exclusively to Human Resources, APAC General Manager at HireRight, Ko Hui Yen, noted: "Factors that might have contributed to this decline in Singapore also include a growing awareness of background screening among job candidates in the country, especially with the recent high profile cases of resume and CV fraud which have been widely reported in the media."

However, the most significant shift was in credit, wherein credit checks increased by 8.7% year-on-year. That said, credit discrepancies too rose dramatically from 0.6% in 2017 to 2.8% in 2018 – one of the only examples of an increase in inaccuracies from across APAC.


India boasted the lowest discrepancy rates across all of APAC, standing overall at 12.5% in 2018 (15.8% in 2017). In particular, India made great strides in professional license discrepancies, down from 15.8% in 2017 to 5.9% in 2018 – possibly due, in part, to recent government crackdowns.

Ko explained the phenomenon: "In the case of India, the low discrepancy rates are likely due to the sheer number of checks being ordered and conducted in the country."

Hong Kong

The state's overall discrepancy rate fell more than four percentage points from 21.4% in 2017, to 17% in 2018. Employment checks were the most common form of screening across both years.

That said, it was educational discrepancies that dominated, with Hong Kong noting unusually high rates of inaccuracy. One in five (20.8%) education screenings marked a discrepancy in 2018 (25.8% in 2017), compared to a regional average of 9.4%.

Commenting on the findings, APAC General Manager at HireRight, Ko Hui Yen said: "It’s reassuring to see that the tides of change continue to sweep through the region, placing background screening at the top of the hiring agenda.

"However, we must be wary of resting on our laurels. As recent high-profile cases of resume and CV fraud such as Mikhy Farrera Brochez demonstrate, or indeed as our study reveals on a market-by-market basis, there is always room to improve processes and better prepare for risk."

Check out the infographic with overall trends:

Graphics / HireRight

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