Why Do Companies Post Fake Jobs?

In the job search, you will have seen that a company has posted a job, but it looks like that the job does not really exist. “Fake job” can mean different things to different people. These are the different problems you might have. Are companies posting fake jobs to lure experts and trick them into getting their hands on the resumes, or is there a more alarming agenda behind it? Fake job posting is a (rarely) smartly designed type of scam aimed at job seekers for a variety of unprofessional reasons. Still, these scams can look legit to an unsuspicious person scrolling through the vast pool of jobs and will come across a fake job ad. And although most tech talents aren’t actively looking for a new employer, falling for a phantom ad is still realistic. How so? Some recruitment agencies use strategies that defy work ethic. Advertising fake job postings falls right into this category. But why would they post fake job ads? Some do it simply for research – whether to gain a better insight of the job market or to assess the recruitment tools and the job board,

Others do it to collect CVs and be prepared to grow their current talent pool for the next time around, this shows unfair hiring practices – when an actual opportunity comes up, and there’s nothing left to fulfill but invite a talent for an interview,

Snatching an extra email address and adding it to a contact list is one of the reasons to scam the job seekers,

Companies also tend to advertise phantom roles when they already have a new employee in mind only to make it look more appropriate to others,

Lastly, some people or organizations have a more sinister plan, and they intend to use the applicants’ personal information to commit some sort of a crime.


Whichever the reason behind this type of fraud is, you should be able to spot it instantly and avoid any future contact with a company prone to hoax.


Learning how to identify fake job postings is imperative. Even though you might never encounter a scammer, it’s still best to know how to recognize one. Here are some job descriptions that should raise your suspicion for job scams: 
  • A phony career opportunity ad will lack in personalization,

  • Vague job description that sound like something anyone could do are almost definitely a job scam,

  • Job market shams also fall short when it comes to company branding and uniqueness,

  • Spelling mistakes and lousy grammar can also reveal a fake job posting,

  • Requesting personal and payment information often points out to a massive red flag,

  • Company website, overall social media efforts, and presence, and online reputation management can tell you whether their postings are legit,

  • The email address you’re supposed to send a CV to has shady written all over, and it doesn’t end with any company domain.


These are the basic elements of a potential fake job posting. Watch out for them, and don’t get involved with fake recruiters that showcases questionable behavior or practices. Always remember to do a background check on the company and also the hiring managers. There are fake ads everywhere and we should always be on a lookout for fake recruitment agency.


The job does not exist

In this situation, the company has posted a job, but they never wanted to hire someone. There can be different reasons why a company would do that. In general, the employer might want to hire for this job in the future (but just not right now). Posting a “Fake Job” can bring the company a lot of information. Posting a “Fake Job” can bring the company a lot of information.

  • The company wants to see how easy it is to hire for that position. For example, it might be important to know how many suitable candidates for “Admin assistant in CBD for 2,300 SGD per month” the company would receive if they were hiring. Next time they are hiring, the company knows how many candidates they will get.
  • They just want to collect many resumes and email addresses from jobseekers. In a few months, they will maybe call you and ask you if you are still interested.
  • Sometimes, the recruiter has an internal KPI (goal) they need to reach. For example, they need to schedule 30 interviews every week otherwise they have not reached “target”. Some recruiters might then post jobs and schedule many interviews to look busy ad hard working.

The information from the job post is fake

You have applied to the job but during the interview, you find out that the salary is much lower, the location is far away or you have to work a lot of overtime. Many jobseekers see this as a “Fake Job”. Companies will post “Fake Jobs” like this because they know that very few jobseekers will apply when they give the correct salary information in the job post. The company posts the job with the fake salary to attract many candidates and during the interview process the company will try to convince you to accept the real salary. It is up to you to decide whether you think the salary is enough. You should be careful: companies who do not give the real salary in the job post, might cause you even more trouble after you have started working there.

It's not uncommon for a candidate to apply for a job for which he or she seemingly meets all the required qualifications, only to see the same job listed on one or more job boards day after day, week after week, yet the candidate never receives a response to his or her application.

You have sent your application, but you never heard back

You have sent your application, but the recruiter has never contacted you. It looks like as if the job never existed. There can be many reasons why you did not hear back.

  • The Recruiter has not seen your application. Sometimes, a recruiter is also posting 10 different jobs on 3 different platforms (for example workclass, fastjobs and jobstreet). The recruiter might not see your application or
  • Recruiters has received too many applications. For some jobs, the recruiter receives over 50 applications and the recruiter does not have the time to reply to everyone.
  • The recruiter has seen your application but you are not a good fit. The recruiter does not have the time to send you an email to reject you. Sometimes the recruiter also likes your profile but not for the job you applied to. They don’t want to reject you and disappoint you. They will keep quiet and call you later when they find the right job for you.
  • The position has already been filled and you have sent your application too late.

You had a great interview, the company did not call you

You went for an interview and the everything went well. Now, the company is silent and has not called you in 2 weeks. It is normal that companies change their mind in the very last moment when they have to sign a contract with you and pay money.

  • The company does not have the budget. The company has checked if they have the money to hire you and they realized they do not have enough money to pay you.
  • The company is facing business problems. In the Covid19, many F&B outlets had to stop hiring from one day to another because new restrictions on dining-in were introduced.
  • Someone else who already works at that company is doing the job now. For example, you have applied for a role in customer service, but the company has decided that sales workers now also have to work in customer service.

Searching for a job can be tough and some jobs are even fake. If you don’t hear back after your application, it does not always mean that your application was bad. There can be many reasons why a company might not hire for this position at the moment (such as budget issue, business problems that cause hiring freeze and other reason). As a jobseeker, you just have to keep on applying for similar jobs at new companies. Sooner or later you will hear back and land your dream job.

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