A Most Unfortunate Resume Mistake No One Will Tell You

I participate in the Career Collective, a community of bloggers who talk about careers and write different posts in response to a common question each month. Up today: scary resume mistakes in honor of Halloween.

My mistake is one that can't be seen on the resume–it lies underneath and only shows up in electronic searches to the discerning eye.

I'm talking about Document Properties. The information you see when you view a doc in GoogleDocs or in the information line on a file. Most specifically: the author field. It's very easy to overlook this minor detail.

When you save your resume, make sure you are listed as the author of your resume. Not anyone else who gave you tips or provided you with writing assistance. Not your friends. And especially not your former employer.

When a prospective employer sees a different name on your resume, they won't tell you. They may just not consider you.

Here's how to fix this in Microsoft Word. Use "Save As" to save your document. Enter your name as author and title in the Properties section.

Word_save
You can make this adjustment in other documents by modifying information in the Properties section of your document–or in searching for how to modify properties using help.

That's it. A quick fix for a potentially scary mistake.

Here are suggestions from my fellow colleagues on Career Collective. (And Happy Halloween!)

This entry was posted in Personal Branding & Marketing, Resume Writing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to A Most Unfortunate Resume Mistake No One Will Tell You

  1. Gayle Howard says:

    Oh yes! I see that all the time. “Joe Smith” sends me his resume and the properties say “Lucy Brown” at the same company. Looks terrible. I prefer the next step up though which is removing metadata completely. This site does it here for free. http://trial.3bview.com/3BTrial/pages/clean.jsp
    Good article. So many people don’t know about metadata!

  2. Dawn Bugni says:

    Chandlee –
    What a wonderful, simple, but frequently overlooked tip. Lots of people don’t even know about the properties box or to check it for residual information. As in Gayle’s example above, nothing’s worse than “broadcasting” you’re using someone else’s resume or worse yet, having a competitor’s name pop up in that box.
    EXCELLENT add to this topic. Thanks!

  3. Chandlee,
    I’ve seen resumes with someone else’s name in the property field…because they stole someone’s resume and made it their own…that’s really scary! Good tip!

  4. Chandlee,
    So true that many people over look this tiny detail. It’s amazing how a tiny mistake can balloon into a BIG faux pas in the eyes of a hiring manager.
    Thanks for expanding on this issue, hopefully forestalling future such mistakes for many job seekers!
    Jacqui

  5. Chandlee,
    Great tip that I am sure many job seekers are not aware of!
    Errors are often seen as careless, however small. No one can afford to present as careless in today’s marketplace!
    Grazie mille per la saggezza!
    Megan

  6. Chandlee,
    Every detail matters! I am so glad you wrote about this as it often is overlooked (as the comments support)!
    Great job and the screen shot is also helpful for those who have no idea what you are talking about!

  7. I agree with Chandlee, very happy to see this kind of helpful post.

  8. Working says:

    Yes this was very helpful!

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