MY EMAIL ATE MY JOB!

Electronic First Impressions

Princess@abc.com, hyperstud@sbc.net, TooHot@yahoo.com.
These are email names you might expect a teenager to have – but as a job seeker, they are inappropriate and could cost you a chance at a job. Employers who see a silly, rude or suggestive email address are more likely to delete your email than to read it.

If the email address you use for your friends isn’t appropriate for job search, it doesn’t mean you have to abandon it – although you may want to consider changing it if you’ve had it since Jr. High… You can get a second address for your job search. The key is to check it every day of your job search, using only that email address for all electronic business correspondence.

Experts say a big problem with email is not just the wacky addresses, but the slang, jargon and sloppy spelling and grammar. U want teh recipeent to hi-er U, not LOL @ U [Misspellings intentional.] Be sure to use complete sentences, and always hit ‘Spell-check” before sending.

If the job you are applying for requires creativity or knowledge about designing or maintaining a website, you will want to refer the employer to your personal website, or one you’ve helped design. Before doing this, take a close look at your site to remove any content that may be offensive or cause the employer to question your judgment. If you list a website on your resume, employers will likely look at it to see an example of your work and to learn more about you.

Technology can help your job search by getting your resume and application in front of many employers in a short amount of time. Check to see if the employer accepts emailed resumes before blanketing the web with them. Also remember that some businesses do not open attachments from senders they do not know. With increased concerns about viruses, ask the employer if it is okay to send your resume as an attachment, or ask if they would rather you copy it to the body of the email. Keep in mind that by emailing your application or resume, you have given up the opportunity of an early face-to-face first impression.

Remember that you aren’t the only one that’s internet savvy. Google yourself! Recruiters and potential employers, as well as potential colleagues, creditors, etc. often use Google to see what’s ‘out there’ about you. It’s not uncommon for employers to do a search on your email address as well as your name according to job-hunt.org.

If you correspond with a prospective employer online, make sure your email address is professional. There are several sites that offer free email addresses and hosting services. If you don’t have an email address, drop by the One-Stop Job Center. Our knowledgeable Career Center staff can help you set one up for free.

Your voice mail greeting is another area to consider when looking for a job. If you don’t remember what yours says, call both your home and your cell phone to see if the messages present you professionally.

Like all aspects of your job search, think them through in advance. Put yourself in the employer’s place and review the ‘electronic’ you before they do. After all, you never get a second chance to make a first impression… even electronically.

If you would like help in this area of your job search, drop by the One-Stop Job Center at 124 N. Irwin Street in downtown Hanford and ask Gus, Gladys, Lupe, or any of our career experts for a hand. We offer free use of computers in our career center with access to the web to help search for job openings.