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Your email address may cost you a job, study shows

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Posted at 5:28 PM, Apr 08, 2015
and last updated 2015-04-10 16:18:03-04

Mikeyboo87@hotmail.com might not have been the best choice for an email address.

That’s because putting an informal email address on a job application can give job recruiters a bad first impression, according to new research.

An informal email was akin to making several spelling errors, said the study, which was published in the journal “Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking” in March.

“We all have unconscious biases, and first impressions, as we know, are often difficult to change,” said journal editor Brenda K. Wiederhold, in a statement. “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.”

For the study, researchers presented the resume of six job candidates to 73 recruiters. The resumes included a mix of informal email addresses, typos and typefaces.

Those with informal addresses — containing names that were fantasy, funny or cute — were rated lower by the recruiters compared to straight up names.

Applicants with informal email applications were rated as having less awareness, humility and honesty. The ratings suggest that recruiters implicitly see the applicants as being more narcissistic and therefore not a team player, the study said.

So next time, just go with Michael.

Gavin Stern is a national digital producer for the Scripps National Desk.

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