In today’s job market, one of the biggest frustrations many professionals face is the feeling that they are being “penalized” by employers unfairly for various aspects of their career that haven’t been under their direct control, such as when a past employer of theirs goes out of business within a short period of time — or when the management of a company makes it impossible for them to perform their job duties successfully and accomplish meaningful results.

Additionally, there are cases when people are able to land a consistent number of interviews, but things always seem to break down around the offer and reference-checking stage — leading the candidate to think that perhaps one of their references is “damning them with faint praise” or not saying something all that flattering about their credentials.  One of my favorite Dilbert cartoons, in fact, portrays an HR person responding to a reference check by saying “Our company’s HR policy prohibits me from commenting on that employee’s past performance. But I’ll give you a hint: my opinion of them rhymes with ‘mazy loron’.”

So how do you fight back when your resume and recent job history seem to be working against you?

Well, one new option you could consider is a new web-based service called CareerExcuse that will gladly fabricate your entire work history, and back it up with references, for a nominal fee!  You really have to see this site to believe it — and while at first I thought it had to be a joke, all of my research seems to suggest that it actually is a legitimate service (if one defines that term very loosely) that was created by some frustrated job hunters who saw a need in the market — and are trying to fill it.

“But wait,” you ask, “surely one can’t just make a whole bunch of outright lies on their resume, can they, and get away with it?”  Well, probably not.  As the folks at CareerExcuse explain in the FAQ section of their site: “We can’t guarantee that you won’t

[get caught and fired] and [we’re] not liable if you do.  If you get the job in the first place..we did our part. It’s up to you to act responsible after you get the job.”  As for the legality of engaging in these tactics, their response is: “No, Since a resume is not a legal document, it is not illegal to misrepresent on a resume.”

Hmmm.  Not sure if I’d pin all of my future career prospects or reputation on the one-line, typo-ridden opinions of a website with a murky moral compass, but hey, that’s just me!

At any rate, even though part of me still suspects this is somebody’s attempt at a joke, or some wacky psychology experiment that a team of undergraduates cooked up, somewhere, I couldn’t resist passing along the resource just so you could all marvel at it.  God bless the Internet and the infinite creative lengths that people will to go to try and make a buck!

P.S.  And while I don’t think I could keep a straight face, I’m halfway tempted to call the company up and say “I’m thinking strongly about using your service, but before I do so, would you mind if I spoke to a few of your references?”