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Resume Metadata

I had a random thought today while I was processing some e-discovery documents. I stumbled upon a resume, and noticed that the author name didn’t match the name on the resume. That got me thinking.

Now, certainly there are plenty of reasons why the author name would not match the name on the resume, things like borrowing a computer, having a shared computer at home, or simply having someone else type it up for you. But still, I wondered if any hiring managers out there have ever looked at the metadata of a resume, and whether that influenced how they felt about that resume.

As the hiring manager, how would you feel about a resume with an author that’s a resume writing service? Would that make you question how much you’re reading the thoughts of the candidate or the words of someone else?

Or, what else could the metadata tell you? What if the author is listed as the company they currently work for? What if the edit/save information showed they were working on this document on that work PC during work hours? How would that change your thinking on a candidate, or should it? Heck for that matter, how would you feel about someone sending you a resume from their work email address during work?

Of course, speaking of email, just like you shouldn’t have a questionable email address, like hotmama98@hotmail, you probably don’t want to write your resume signed on as Weedsmoker, or something similar. That just might show up in the author field, and well, what are people going to think of you?

Then again, maybe most managers and HR people never even take any of this into consideration. I think I would if it was me. If Googling people is part of due diligence now days, why wouldn’t something like checking out the metadata of an electronic document? Never know what it will tell you. (Especially if someone was silly enough to use track changes…)

So, anyone want to start sending resumes as PDF’s? 🙂

Tags: Resume, metadata

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  1. I prefer sending them as PDF. Whatever the file format, I examine and edit appropriate metadata. I’ll add keywords and description. I don’t know if anyone is seeing it, but it doesn’t cost anything but a few seconds of editing.

  2. Tony, that’s very good, common-sense advice. Of course, my experience with seeing various resume’s show up in e-discovery is that hardly anyone even thinks about what the metadata shows about their resume. 🙂

  3. Countless people buy resume books, use career web sites, appropriate other peoples resumes etc. Does it really matter ? Also what’s the difference between working on a resume on company time vs surfing the net, making personal phone calls, going outside to smoke constantly, or hanging around other co-workers desks to gossip.

  4. Personally, i don’t think it matters, in fact I’d rather see someone willing to use the expertise of a resume service and get the job done right than someone write it themselves and struggle. Unless, of course, I’m hiring for a writer. 🙂

    I also agree about writing it on company time, there isn’t much difference between that and the other things you mention, but I think we all know of managers who that would make a huge difference to, and corporate cultures where that would certainly be frowned upon.

    Mostly, I was just curious to see if anyone was paying attention to all the things metadata could tell you about a candidate. I might, for example understand completely why any of the things you mentioned would happen, but might be more impressed by the candidate who knew enough to go back and edit that stuff, like Tony does. That shows some real attention to detail. I like that. I don’t necessarily rule you out for not doing it and having things like other authors names, or your company’s name as the author, but in a job search every little detail counts. If someone else is going to the trouble to check that detail, they’re one small thing ahead of you right there.

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