Typos on Resumes

I am currently in the process of collecting and reviewing resumes for a position that has opened up within my company. This position doesn’t require the employee to do much written correspondence but he/she will have to communicate in writing to his/her fellow employees as well as document conversations and complaints in medical charts.

I really find not proof reading a resume before submitting it to be foolish. However, that being said, I don’t want to totally eliminate a potentially good candidate for a few typos.

My question to you folks is this; would you respond to the applicants and mention that they might want to proof read their resumes? If so, how would you word that correspondence? Or, do you simply think it isn’t my place to take on the role of school teacher.

I wouldn’t let them know. That’s their job to get right and proofreading is a basic task they should know about.

If I had my way, I would toss out any resumes with typos. But when I’ve been involved in searches we didn’t have enough candidates to be that ruthless. :frowning:

That being said, I noticed that I left an extra blank line in between two sections of my resume after it went out, and I hoped they would overlook it. :o

I’d refer them to the web site of Resumania . Let them get a few laughs.

Sending out a resume with errors in it indicates a level of “I don’t give a shit” so profound that I’m not sure your saying something would make a difference.

I’ve never seen that site before. Hilarious!

Re: the OP – resume goes in the trash, and I forget about it shortly thereafter.

I’ve never been in a hiring position but I would weigh typos on a resume heavily against an applicant. A resume tries to present the best possible first impression. If the best possible image they can project on paper this includes typos I’m not impressed. I would not correct it for them but if they ask about ways they could have improved their application I would tell them.

I’d always been in favor of tossing out imperfect résumés, but recently had reason to change my mind. My new boss (since May) not only had typos on her résumé but was late to her interview with the staff she’d be supervising. Not a good first impression at all, and I was surprised (and not pleased) when she was hired. But it turns out I enjoy working with her and she’s doing a good job. So this particular experience is working out well, and as a result I’ve tempered my impatience with typos.

I just don’t agree. There have been times in my life when I absolutely slaved over a resume, farmed it out to 3 or 4 people for proofreading (and I have been a professional editor myself, and so has my mom) and STILL found a typo after it went out.

Typos happen to the best from time to time. I would hope 1 small typo would not be a dealbreaker, although numerous typos certainly do not reflect well on the applicant. Grammatical errors are actually much worse in my view.

Simplest answer to the OP: If person A and person B are the only applicants for a really cool job and they have the exact same qualifications and experience but person A had a spelling error.

Person B get’s the job.

I’m currently in a similar position - I’m screening applicants for my current job (I’m moving on to greener pastures).

I can’t believe the number of applicants who submitted resumes and cover letters with typos and spelling errors all the way through them. It made it easier to narrow down the list of interviewees though - I just tossed the ones with errors in the circular file.

As to if you should contact the potential hire about their error ridden resume - well, I wouldn’t bother - if you’re too dippy to know that submitting a error ridden resume for a job is a bad idea, you’re too dippy to work in any job that requires one.

The irony, it burns.

For me, finding typos on a resume gives rise to a strong presumption against hiring that person. One or two, and I’d raise an eyebrow but still try to give the person a fair hearing. But the more typos, IMHO, the less likely such a person gives a damn or will do the job he or she is hired for with any kind of commitment to quality work.

A minor typo or two would not get my attention. Once they start to get prevelant, or glaring, that’s another issue. And if the applicant was from another country, that’d be another issue altogether.

My dad used to hire for a research lab - he complained about applicants using EMOTICONS in their resumes and cover letters. The mind boggles.

I am not very good at paying attention to detail, but one incident helped me to become more anal about re-reading my stuff before sending it out. I attended a class called “Teaching in the Community College” and one of our assignments was writing mock cover letters. I had the file up on my computer when my friend came over, and she mischievously added random adjectivers throughout the text, creating phrases such as "my bondage teaching philosophy, " “two very different and magical education systems,” “a kinky desire to impart my own enthusiasm,” etc, etc. We had a good laugh before I went back and deleted all her alterations. I turned the letter in and got it back with some comments and an A. I didn’t bother reading the comments then.

A month later, I was about to send the cover letter out to a potential employer and I decided to look over the comments for any editing suggestions. Much to my embarassment (and amusement) I found out that I had forgotten to catch one of my friend’s alterations. The word “magical” was circled and marked with a “?” for good measure. My poor professor must have been so confused. I made sure to erase that from my cover letter and went over the entire thing obssessively before feeling it was safe to send it out. After that little incident I’ve become better at forcing myself to scutinize my letters and resumes word for word before letting them go.

Count me in with the “Typos Bad” crowd. I’d automatically trash any application/resume that had spelling errors in it.

If they get distracting, then it gets tossed. One or two doesn’t bother me. My main number 1 deal breaker is including software proficiency that you have clearly never used upon further questioning. Although I hire for jobs within a software company, so YMMV. Also, please include the versions. “Word, XL and PowerPoint” means nothing.

My favorite answer (many years ago) was this answer: “Well, I’m familiar with 3, but not as proficient with 2 and 1.”

The question: “Have you ever worked with Lotus 123?”

Weigh the importance of typos, considering their magnitude and relevance to the job. But I recommend not taking it on yourself to inform the applicants. That can only end badly.

If, due to a paucity of flawless candidates, you wind up hiring someone who had typos on his or her resume, you may want to discuss the importance of improving business writing skills to meet the standards of the job. I hope you are not in that predicament.

This is the best piece of writing you’re ever going to give to me. Yes, spelling counts.

Bwahahahahahahahahahaha!!! God that’s funny.

I’m a senior technical writer/editor, and during the interview for my current job the woman who would be my boss (and who is also an editor) commented on the fact that there were no errors on my resume. I’ve been a hiring manager, so I know that some people who apply for writing/editing jobs do submit resumes that have errors, but I was surprised to learn how many error-ridden resumes she had received from supposedly senior people!