26 Jun 2015

What your email address says about you...

Theoretically, it's the content of your CV and your covering letter/email that count.  These days, the life of a recruitment consultant is one glued to your inbox and where both candidates and clients prefer to email rather than chat.  Obviously it's much easier to surreptitiously and silently contact your favourite recruiter without constantly nipping out of the office but it does mean that the recruiters life can be one dimensional.  Anyway, the point is, I see a lot of email addresses and I've decided that what your email says about you, can be quite significant - both in terms of what comes before the @ and what comes after it.  

Seriously. The email is often the first thing that the eye is drawn to at the top of a CV.  If it says sexydancer@whatever.com (I'll use whatever.com as my generic domain name for the purposes of this topic) or dramaqueen22@whatever.com....then my first impressions are already tainted. Similarly, there seems to be a preponderance of the use of the numbers 69 and 666.

So firstly, what comes before the @.  Why does it matter?  Because the CV is representing you in a professional manner and during the course of your applications, many prospective employers and recruiters are going to see that email....and judge you.  So whilst you may think that psychosuzy@whatever.com is just a bit of a giggle, it doesn't immediately shout 'hire me' to the person reading your CV.  I also see a lot of addresses like thejonesfamily@whatever.com.  Now, far be it from me to hold it against you that you have a 'family' email, however, what that says to a client is that you have a family life and you won't be working late, might need time off for sick days and football matches.  I've always said that a CV needs to avoid giving potential employers any fodder to hold against you - it's why I'm really very anti any photography on a CV and whilst I understand the 'take me as I am' argument. Wouldn't you prefer to get to interview stage on the merits of your skills and employment history rather than someone thinking you're just a bit of a joke or that your family commitments mean your job doesn't come first (again, I'm not saying that family shouldn't come first but in the CV selection process, you've got to come across with the persona that the job comes first - at least during working hours).  And, as that employer will have a big pile of CVs to go through, this is the sort of thing that can mean your CV ends up in the 'no' pile rather than being shortlisted for interview.

Secondly, what comes after the @ is apparently important too.  I hadn't really realised this but I saw a recent post on another site which I'm going to steal and just refer you too.  Made me snort and actually there are a lot of truths in it!  http://theoatmeal.com/comics/email_address.

I've been in this industry a while.  I'm no psychologist and so I'm constantly surprised by how people behave and how people think it's appropriate to behave during the recruitment process. I guess it's all tied up with how you perceive yourself and how you would like others to perceive you (oh yes, sixpacksteve@whatever.com).  But in a professional environment, when you're wanting someone to say 'you're hired', don't give any points away with an unfunny email address.  Although on the plus side, it does give me material for my book!