posted on May 25, 2010 09:55
Emails can be a very convenient method for communication, but they can also spell disaster if not managed appropriately! When applying for a job, always treat an email as you would a letter or a personal meeting. Introduce yourself and politely explain your reasons for making contact.
Following are some important guidelines to ensure you don’t get culled based on what you did or didn’t write in an email:
- Manners - Please remember that manners are extremely important, and an email doesn’t exclude you from using them!
- Spell Check – Use spell check and if you are not sure – look it up!
- Grammar & Punctuation – Ensure you use punctuation and grammar correctly. Do this wrong and it can change the way a sentence is read or the way a word is pronounced. Dont use abbreviations or acronyms....more on this further down
- Capitals – Only use capitals for the beginning of a sentence or for a name of a person or place. Other than this – DO NOT USE YOUR CAPS LOCK. Capitals can be viewed as shouting and could elicit negative views from the reader
- Underline and Bolding - use sparingly. Some will view the use of these as rude and again, it could trigger a negative response
- Proofread – before you send, make sure you proofread. A good rule of thumb is to leave the message overnight and re-read with fresh eyes and sometimes a fresh perspective the next day
- Abbreviations and Emoticons – Be careful with this one! You don’t know the readers level of experience or their personal views on the use of these. They may be very experienced but view this as highly inappropriate on a professional level. Better to be safe than sorry!
- Urgent and Important Flags – Avoid using these, as your application is just as important as everyone else’s.
In the career world, email is a great way to gauge the applicants’ level of communication skill. If you don’t get it right the first time, the recruiter can very easily cull your application based on your performance, before you even meet!