What a Difference Your E-Mail Makes: Effects of Informal E-Mail Addresses in Online Résumé Screening

Marlies van Toorenburg, Janneke Oostrom, Thomas Pollet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Résumés are screened rapidly, with some reports stating that recruiters form their impressions within 10 seconds. Certain résumé characteristics can have a significant impact on the snap judgments these recruiters make. The main goal of the present study was to examine the effect of the e-mail address (formal vs. informal) used in a résumé on the hirability perceptions formed by professional recruiters (N=73). In addition, the effect of the e-mail address on hirability perceptions was compared to the effects of spelling errors and typeface. Participants assessed the cognitive ability, personality, and the hirability of six fictitious applicants for the job of an HR specialist. The hirability ratings for the résumés with informal e-mail addresses were significantly lower than the hirability ratings for résumés that featured a formal e-mail address. The effect of e-mail address was as strong as the effect of spelling errors and stronger than that of typeface. The effect of e-mail address on hirability was mediated by perceptions of conscientiousness and honesty-humility. This study among actual recruiters shows for the first time that the choice of the e-mail address used on a résumé might make a real difference.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)135-140
JournalCyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking
Volume18
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 9 Mar 2015

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