Would you ever fake a job reference? Come on, tell the truth...
William Schmidt built a business based on lies.
CareerExcuse.com launched in February and claims to help customers find jobs and provide the service at a reasonable cost. How do they do it? They lie.
Schmidt says he got the idea after hearing from many people and noticing even more online who were looking for someone they could put down as a reference on their resume.
"It did not take long to put two and two together and see there is a big need out there for such a service."
So after purchasing a subscription, customers can put down faux businesses they have worked for and positions they have held attached with a phone number which rings at Career Excuse. From there, someone will verify employment.
Unethical? Perhaps. Illegal? No.
Since a resume is not a legal document, people can lie on theirs without legal ramifications. However, the Better Business Bureau says there is obvious red tape with such a business.
"It is really unfortunate because it is so highly unethical." says Dean Taylor of the Central, Coastal, and Southwest Texas Better Business Bureau. "When someone tells you they are going to help you lie about yourself that should be a red flag right away."
But Schmidt, whose business is comprised of just two full-time and one part-time employee, says he is providing a helpful service which helps people get jobs at a time when finding work is difficult.
"There is no better feeling when one of my subscribers tells me they got hired. To me, that is mission accomplished."
And what about those that say what he does is not ethical?
"We suggest they do not use our service."
The Career Excuse website has different levels of membership and the more you pay, the more deception you will receive. Schmidt says customers can receive references from bankrupt companies as well as one of many temporary services.
There are some lines.
"We do not provide service for any government agency or medical agency. We try to stay in the private industry field" Schmidt said.
But the site makes one thing clear; if you get caught, you are on your own.
That is why Taylor says anyone who pays for a membership is making a bad career move.
"If you lie on a resume and the company finds out, and the likelihood is they will find out, you probably are going to get fired."
Taylor says good companies have good human resources departments which can easily see through the disguise.
"They are going to call a person they have a number for or look in the phone book and you are going to get caught. It really does open up a can of worms that could really get you in trouble."
There have been other similar websites pop up recently also aimed at selling lies.