When I see misspelled words and simple grammar errors, I start to twinge. I was always the person that my friends relied on before submitting a school writing assignment, so things like typos drive me crazy. And I am not the only one; hiring managers and recruiters don’t like them either. In fact, if your resume or email is littered with misspellings or misused words; your information may end up in the trash.

Regardless of your English skills, proofreading your job search communications is something everyone needs to do. Here are a few quick things to check before you send or submit anything:

  • Check the spelling of your name and contact email. Simple mistakes are easy to make when typing phone numbers and email addresses.
  • Check the spelling of the recipient’s name. If that name is spelled wrong, the recipient may stop reading.
  • Use spell check, but also review with a human set of eyes. Spell check will catch a lot of errors, but will not catch things like words that are actually words used incorrectly.
  • Have a friend or mentor review your document.
  • Make sure you use a consistent tone.
  • Watch your punctuation. For example, use a period at the end of every sentence in a bulleted list, but not in a list of phrases.
  • Make sure your dates are logical and correct. Use consistent date formatting in your resume.

The few extra minutes it can take to proofread your documents can be the difference between getting the job or a one-way ticket to the recycle bin. As a final tip, I will share one of my biggest grammar pet peeves: When people use “alot.” It’s not a word. It is always spelled ”a lot”.

This Career Coach blog post is part of the series: Your Job Search Checklist from A to Z. If you are interested in checking out the webinar on the same topic, click here. Otherwise, keep watching the Career Coach blog for 26 job search alphabet posts.

Jill Kempka

About Jill Kempka


Jill loves to share information about ways to keep up with the changing world of work. She focuses on quick tips, facts and helpful lists to give job seekers tactics and advice they can immediately use.