Could your email address keep job recruiters from reading your online resume?

Job recruiters may review hundreds of online resumes for a position, often screening them quickly and discarding those that are not appropriate. An applicant’s email address can greatly impact first impressions and affect ones chances of getting hired according to a new study published in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The article is available free on the Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking website until April 18, 2015.

Marlies van Toorenburg, Janneke Oostrom, and Thomas Pollet, VU University, Amsterdam, designed a study to determine whether the use of an informal rather than a more formal email address by a job applicant when sending an online resume affects how hirable the person would seem to a professional recruiter. An informal email address includes slang, cute, or made-up names instead of the applicant’s real name.

In the article “What a Difference Your Email Makes: Effects of Informal Email Addresses in Online Résumé Screening,” the authors describe how the formal or informal nature of an applicant’s email address impacts a recruiter’s hirability perceptions. The researchers also compare the importance of the email address to spelling errors and the typeface used in the email in passing judgment on an online resume.

“We all have unconscious biases, and first impressions, as we know, are often difficult to change,” says Editor-in-Chief Brenda K. Wiederhold, PhD, MBA, BCB, BCN, Interactive Media Institute, San Diego, California and Virtual Reality Medical Institute, Brussels, Belgium. “This study may assist recruiters in becoming more conscious of their biases, as well as aiding job applicants in understanding the importance of their electronic identities.”


Mary Ann Liebert Publishing

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