Increasingly, connecting with employers is done electronically.  Be sure to proof your information as carefully as you would a hard-copy version and consider these additional guidelines.

Applying via E-mail

  • Establish a professional email account name, avoiding words or phrases that will undercut your credibility.
  • Use a short but meaningful subject header which includes your name.
  • Follow instructions, such as referencing job code numbers in the subject line.
  • Write your correspondence as a formal letter, using an appropriate salutation and not using emoticons or all capital letters.
  • Apply in the format the employer requests, which may be to send your resume in the email text or as an attachment.
  • If sending your resume and cover letter as attachments, use pdf format and be sure to call the document something that includes your name (bobsmithresume.pdf rather than resume.pdf).

On-line Applications

  • Follow employer-specific website instructions, but be cautious in providing personal information such as social security number.
  • Complete all fields, even those that are not required.
  • Be aware of when your application is submitted; some sites allow you to enter data across multiple visits with a final submit option.
  • Target your information to the specific organization and position.
  • Submit applications for each position of interest, updating your profile as appropriate.
  • Use keywords found in the job description in your qualifications and in fields requesting a summary.
  • Be aware that it may not be possible to include a cover letter, but you can paste cover letter content into open text boxes or make them an additional page of your resume document.
  • Follow-up with employers on specific openings just as if hard-copy been sent.
  • Reference your portfolio if appropriate.

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Your On-line Image

Presenting and protecting your professional image Employers value honesty and integrity and utilize a variety of means to assess the character and reputation of potential employees.  This includes performing basic web searches, conducting background and credit checks as well as monitoring social media. 

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and require careful and wise use. Make purposeful decisions about how you will use each site, socially or professionally, and be consistent. Think twice before posting information that could potentially be seen by your professor, your adviser, college administrators, campus security, prospective employers, your parents, thieves, and the rest of the world.  Being selective about the information you disclose will help protect your privacy, security, and reputation.  Privacy policies do not prevent other users from redistributing information, photos, blogs, etc.