MRO Magazine

Don’t cheat on your resume


July 11, 2007
By PEM Magazine
After reading PEM’s second annual salary survey, it’s painfully obvious that maybe you’re not making enough money. You decide it’s time to change jobs. What to do? The first step is to dust off and update your resume. Unfortunately, some people can’t resist the temptation to pad their resumes.

More than 90 percent of college students admit they would cheat to get a job. A quick check with employment head-hunters shows a similar trend is happening in business. Don’t be a part of resume padding, especially if you’re an engineer. The penalties are severe.

An individual in Toronto was recently jailed for 30 days and ordered to pay costs to Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO) of more than $19,000. He was found in contempt of a previous Order of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice for violating the Professional Engineers Act.

The previous Order was made in 1995. The application was brought after a PEO investigation revealed in the spring of 2000, the individual described himself as a “structural engineer” and an “engineer” to clients and an another person, while working on a Toronto construction project.


The individual isn’t, and has never been, licenced as a professional engineer in Ontario. The court also heard the individual had been convicted on four separate occasions of misrepresenting himself as an engineer between 1993 and 1998. Fines of $85,000 were levied.

The PEO licences Ontario’s 67,000 professional engineers and permits more than 4,200 companies and individuals to offer engineering services to the public under Certificates of Authorization. A valid Certificate is required to provide professional engineering services in Ontario.

This is an extreme case, but one that shouldn’t be ignored. It’s easy to think that you can get away with misrepresenting yourself, either in a resume or working on the job. This is morally wrong, however, and you could land in jail. My grandfather said it best: honesty is the best policy.

Robert Robertson, Editor
PEMAC Allied Member