Nowadays job candidates are expected to quantify the impact of their work on resumes. (E.g. "Increased team work productivity by X percent" or "Automated 500 reports with SSRS, saving 100 man hours a month.")

How do companies verify such figures on a resume?

Currently I've worked on a project and I know that assignment had an impact of X percent in the team but my manager doesn't know that because he doesn't keep track of that. He simply knows that productivity "went up." Now he has left the company. I want to list that on my resume and but no one could back me up on that claim.

  • As long as you can explain and justify the numbers, there shouldn't be a problem. – Chan-Ho Suh Aug 18 '19 at 4:20
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    Related: workplace.stackexchange.com/questions/136901/… – nvoigt Aug 18 '19 at 8:58
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    Please add a location tag. Where I live the CV would be thrown out for wasting space with useless and unverifiable bragging. – nvoigt Aug 18 '19 at 8:59
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    @nvoigt and where would that be? where in the world is the country where “unverifiable bragging” is instantly and magically recognized and then dismissed? – teego1967 Aug 19 '19 at 19:40
  • @teego1967 maybe Germany? :p – Chan-Ho Suh Sep 11 '19 at 23:38

How do companies verify such figures on a resume?

For all intents and purposes, they don't.

However, tread carefully. If you claim savings that don't appear to make sense, expect probing questions to determine if you can back them up.

When people make up numbers and statistics, they tend to make particular mistakes. Sometimes, they round up too much. For example, "My work saves 100 hours per month" might be more suspect than 85 hours. Sometimes they attempt to claim sole credit for something that must have been a team project.

Don't expect that a company will attempt to verify metrics on your resume. But be prepared to talk about how you did it and how you measured it. And don't be tempted to lie.

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    For example, "My work saves 100 hours per month" might be more suspect than 85 hours. Interesting factoid; this is exactly what happened to the guy who measured Mt Everest's height using goniomery and decided to add two feet to Mt Everest's height. He assumed that when he said the mountain was exactly 29,000 feet high, people would assume his method wasn't very precise and assumed he rounded it to the nearest thousand. – Flater Aug 19 '19 at 13:55
  • QI video for more information – Flater Aug 19 '19 at 13:56

The advice on low-quality job blogs tends to give baloney examples like “increased customer satisfaction by 11%” as an example of an objective quantifiable result. But is it really? If the interviewer is in anyway critical, they’re going to be asking all kinds of questions including whether or not that figure is even knowable. Just because something is given in the form of a number doesn’t mean it’s objective or even believable.

It is MUCH better to instead start with a narrative of the problem. Describe the scope and nature of the issue and how you approached the problem. Discuss and express gratitude for the contributions of your colleagues. Outline how your solution or your contribution to the solution impacted the original problem. Describe the challenges faced, What are you proud of? What stands out? If the context allows for it, then yes, cite some figures but those are now beside the point unless you’re talking about sales.

It’s also possible that the “quantifiable” result isn’t even a number, but is rather described as putting forward a new possibility— a new thing rather than more or less of something that already exists.

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