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Rethink the contact information on your resume for a 2021 job search

The pandemic and the resulting workplace and cultural shifts we’ve seen over the past year mean that it is time to reassess how we prepare resumes for a job search under current conditions.

Starting right off the top of your document, consider what contact information you provide. This is important because if an employer doesn’t like the first thing they read, they may stop right there. Also, if they can’t get in touch with you, nothing else in your resume matters.

Resume contact information to include in 2021

Your name and title. There’s no mystery there. Naturally, you would put your name at the top of your document. I am a firm believer in also having a title – and that this title should always be the name of the job you are applying for.

This lets the potential employer know right away that you are applying for this specific role, and that this resume will show how you are a relevant candidate for it. Anything else can give the impression that you are applying for the wrong job or cause some other kind of confusion.

Your phone number. Leave a personal phone number that you answer and that has a voicemail that you check regularly. (I know, nobody likes to check their voicemail anymore, but when you’re looking for a job, you have to.)

Don’t use a work phone number. If you are currently employed, it can give a bad impression to new employers that you spend your time at work looking for other jobs.

Your email address. Similarly, don’t use a company or work email. Have a personal email address that is just your name – or as close to it as possible – and check this address daily. Employers won’t wait long for potential candidates who don’t get back to them in a timely manner.

Mailing address is less relevant now. Whether or not to include your home address on your resume has been a topic of debate in recent years. That information is less relevant than ever right now as more and more people are working remotely. (Plus, no employer ever responds to a job application by snail mail.)

Companies will need your physical address when it comes time to negotiate and sign a contract. Before that, you can leave it off your resume unless you think that it will boost your chances of being hired. A rule of thumb is that the closer you live to the actual workplace, the more of an asset your location can be. Traditionally, employers have shown a bias towards local candidates.

However, once again, in the post COVID-19 era, this has become less relevant. Impress employers with your accomplishments and credentials before you start sharing where you live.

Social media profile links. Linking to a LinkedIn profile can back up the facts of your resume and show your connections to professionals in your field. This can impress potential employers. (If you have a LinkedIn account, make sure that the information posted there matches your resume. Discrepancies can make employers suspicious.)

You can also provide links to your other profiles, if they are relevant, or show you in a positive, professional light. If you have thoughtful well-written posts about issues in your industry or community, this can also help make a positive first impression.

If your social posts are angry political rants and party pics, you’d better leave them off. But be aware, even if you don’t proactively provide links to your profiles, most employers will be looking you up anyway. Make sure you’re aware of the red flags they might find.

How to clean up your social media for the job search.

Personal website or blog. If you have a personal online presence such as a blog or website that are in any way relevant the job, then include these as well. An online portfolio can help by showcasing your work for potential employers.

If your website is on a completely unrelated topic, you may want to leave it off. Your blog about fishing won’t hurt your chances of being hired as an accountant, but it doesn’t really help either. Use your resume – and your contact information – to highlight your fit for the role right off the top.

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