Hiring Managers Share The Worst Things They Discovered When They Googled Their Applicants
_HR is a difficult task. Hiring the "right" people means putting a puzzle together, finding the perfect chemistry. It's like find the best mix of meds to keep the sanity. _
Redditor **ToTacoOrNotToTaco **_reached out to all the HR peeps to see what sort of horror stories they had to share about hiring someone and THEN learning who they were later. _
EMPTY YOUR POCKETS...
I was interviewing a much older guy for a similar position of mine. Everything seemed okay, and he was our best candidate. Before moving forward, I did a quick google search to only find out that he was fired from his previous job because of stealing $5000 worth of computer equipment.
My director hired him anyway.
WELL IT'S NOT LIKE SHE KILLED ANYONE! RIGHT?
Everything looked good on her resume, she was very professional and enthusiastic in her interview and just had that...thing. That self-starter attitude that made you feel like "this girl is going to get it done".
Wellll...ran a background check and literally nothing checked out. She was not actually licensed in her field like she claimed and she had about a dozen priors for various white collar crimes and none of her work history or references checked out. I guess she was just hoping that her charisma would win us over and that we wouldn't bother checking up on her.
DON'T BE FOOLED BY THE AWARDS.
I was a restaurant manager and the owner hired this guy as a chef without doing basic research (which he did a few times). Anyways, the guy said he had won several awards and worked with celebrities, etc.
The guy was a total fool to everyone on staff. I decided to google him. First hit is a mugshot from a drug arrest. Then more articles, one about where he lied about getting a James Beard award from a previous restaurant he worked at. A comment about him owing 25,000 or something to his former boss. The only positive restaurant review he had was from 1990.
CAREFUL OF WHAT YOU POST... LIKE REALLY!
Hiring private tutors to work with middle School students. Had a great conversation with a girl, she stressed how much she wants to be a role model for young girls, basically exactly what we were looking for. Then I googled her and the first picture on her Facebook is her doing drugs.
SEE YOU IN COURT.
I wasn't the hiring manager but my teammate was - a candidate came through that he and some other members interviewed and seemed pretty okay for the job until they checked her out. Turns out she was suing the company (yes, the one she applied for a job for) so my teammate ended up not hiring her.
NO SERIAL KILLERS PLEASE.
This kid, early 20s comes in for a job, seemed normal enough. Google him and he was wanted in another state for stabbing a St. Bernard to death.
JUST SAY NO KIDS.
A little different, but a story that always entertains me..
I worked for a staffing agency. Guy is hired and comes in for background and drug screen. He has lots of priors, but he was working in a kitchen so we got the okay to continue the process. It wasn't until the drug screen that he gets a little nervous. I tell them that we are going to do a drug screen now, and he asks to put it off till Monday. Typically, we'd have to have to it that day so they could start work but this was like 4:45 on a Friday and we wanted to go home so we said yes. Monday rolls around and he shows up. He takes the test and it comes up positive for weed, harder drugs, and some other stuff. We told him that we test multiple things and many showed up. We asked him if that was a surprise. He told us "I do dabble in harder drugs, but I thought this was a test for weed?" We politely said that we couldn't hire him.
There are so many weird stories from working at a staffing agency.
KNOW WHOSE LOOKING FOR YOU!
_Pre-google era but I think it fits the question. Family owned a trucking company. Literally everyone in my immediate family has or had a CDL. Mom's turn to take the newbie for a road test pre hire. During the road test, they were involved in an accident (they were hit while stopped). The company was based out of Indiana. Accident happened in Illinois. Newbie gets arrested on the spot. Come to find out he has warrants that hadn't been out long enough for the background check service we used to get them yet. _
CAUGHT YOU RED HANDED.
I wasn't the hiring manager but I was talking to him about a couple interviews he had coming up. He said he looked up one guy and found that he'd been arrested previously for various identity theft/credit card fraud crimes. This position involved taking payments from customers, among other things, so obviously this guy would not be hired, but that had to be an awkward interview.
SHOW ME YOUR SOCKS!
Had a guy apply for an entry level post with us recently. His CV was okay, so we offered him an interview. Social media seemed okay too. He never turned up for the interview.
A couple of weeks later, there's a story about him in the local paper. Turned out that he was living at the local boarding house, and was found in the kitchen one morning totally wasted. When a couple of women who also lived there tried to escort him back to his room, he got violent. Given the dates stated in the paper, he didn't turn up because he'd been in jail at the time of the interview.
His resume has now been added to the 'do not touch with a 10ft barge pole' section in our filing cabinet.
BE CAREFUL OF THE FBI... THEY DON'T PLAY.
Oh, I've got a good one. We had hired a new entry-level graphic designer. Let's call him Will. He had talent and a decent portfolio, but there were some strange things right from the beginning
For example he would always come in wearing expensive suits, despite our being a jeans-and-t-shirt office, and his having a very low-paid position. We didn't care much about that. No clue how he affords that wardrobe, but that's none of our business. He's a designer, and I guess he likes to look nice. The weirdest thing was that he adamantly refused to accept direct deposit for his paycheck. He wanted a physical check every other week. Strange, but okay. Designers are eccentric sometimes.
So, one evening we're all working really late on a project together. We've got some bottles of wine around, some pizzas, etc. It's miserably long hours but we're a good team and having a good time. All of a sudden Will looks up from his computer and runs as fast as he can out the door. Not a word to any of us, he just dashes out. We all look at each other, try calling him, etc, with no answer. We finish up the project and go home still wondering what happened.
The next day Will doesn't come into work. He doesn't come in the next day either. We try calling his emergency contact, but don't get any response there either. So we Google him, and see the FBI press release. Turns out he was arrested about 500 miles from our office a few hours after he ran out. I guess he got a tip that the FBI was onto him and decided to make a run for it.
Turns out he had been defrauding payroll companies for years, to the tune of about $1M. That's why he didn't want direct deposit for his paycheck. What he didn't know was that we processed our physical checks through the same payroll company as our direct deposit, and they reported his new address to the FBI. Oops.
BACK UP GLENN CLOSE!
I used to manage a group home for developmentally disabled adults. I was in charge of hiring the staff that we needed to make the house run properly. I saw a name come across my desk that I had to interview and I instantly looked them up.
Turns out, this was a girl that had an obsessive crush on me from years ago, and on her social media, she still did. I was in a panic, because she was basically stalking everything I did, and I really couldn't back out because it was 5 minutes before the interview. She came in, and it was so weird... she acted normal.
We interviewed in a professional manner for about 15 minutes, showed her around, and I thought, 'Wow, maybe she has done some maturing and just let it go. Then we got back to my office.
I started a sentence like, 'Well, (name), it's been a pleasure having you here and I-......'
'Oh, no no no, we aren't done yet. You think you can ignore everything like you don't know what's going on?!' I know where you work, now. I know where you live, and I'm going to keep calling.' There was more she was saying along the lines of me telling her to kindly leave, but a phone call to the police, as well as a restraining order kept her away from work and my life.
CHECK HER PURSE.
I hired a girl, she interviewed well. First day she threw up some red flags, but I figured I was misjudging or misinterpreting. People start missing money and one of my belongings disappears, which had never happened prior to her hiring. She was insulting everyone and making customers uncomfortable and I wanted her gone (less than 4 full weeks from her start date) but didn't want to pay unemployment. Finally do a search- arrest records in multiple states involving domestic violence and theft. Lesson learned: CHECK EVERYONE OUT NO MATTER HOW WELL THEY INTERVIEW!
DON'T BEG FOR IT!
I was hiring for our late night shift (shifts ending at 2am/3am) and she was willing to work anything and looking for about 25 hours per week. This was absolutely what the company was looking for. She had mentioned that she was "grieving her little boy who passed two weeks ago and needed to do something to occupy her time".
She finished her one day of computer training and stopped showing up. Later in the week she sent me an email stating that she "wasn't ready to come back to work like she'd thought", which was understandable.
My assistant manager and I decided to look her up only to find that she had multiple GoFundMe pages set up for her sob story with different amounts of time that the supposed child had been dead for. Her facebook was full of selfies and party photos. She ended up asking for the job back a few months later and we shot her down pretty quick.
HELLO JEKYLL MEET HYDE!
We had a near miss... one senior hire. We were talking about him and how something seemed a little off when we googled him. It was like he didn't exist at all and the odd super positive tidbit of information that was always a bit too much of a stretch to be completely believable. I mean one or two people saying you're the best thing on earth is one thing but this was like all you got were these sporadic and hyper, manic observations.
One of the junior members of the team pipes up at this point. She's overheard what we're talking about. Turns out she's worked the last two places he's worked and he's like a locust. He's extremely good at his job but an absolute nightmare in all other ways. He has a really niche skill set, there are always more roles than people to fill so he hops along, bullies everyone out of their role in his team, brings in his entourage to the point where almost anyone normal rage quits because the atmosphere is so toxic. Then when HR try and step in he hits them with a constructive dismissal case and drags lawyers in so there's no paper trail
She said he'd done it at her last job and the one before. It's one of those things that once you know, you start to notice stuff. So at events when somebody mentioned this guy's name half the table would just give each other a look and the others would have no idea. It's not quite an open secret but it's definitely on the grapevine anecdotally if not formally.
Glad we dodged that bullet.
COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS.
Ok not a hiring manager but at the time, I was a makeup artist that was flying to NY to work with a photographer. Right before the trip communication dropped off completely. He wouldn't respond to Instagram or calls or emails.
_A few weeks later, happened to catch his name in the paper for being arrested. _
WORLDWIDE CRIMINAL IS DEFINITELY AN ISSUE.
Good resume, former military. we were going to call him in for an interview but googled him first.
Turns out he was arrested for arms trafficking, the report said he had stolen 2 or 3 small arms as well as a Stinger missile system from the base he was stationed at. the people he set up to sell the stuff to were under cover officers.
CAREFUL OF THOSE WHO LOVE TO "SKI".
_I interviewed a girl who seemed nice, then after passing her off to HR I looked her up. Her name came up as having been fired from the local PD for possession of, among other things, 150 grams of drugs. _