Single spelling mistake can derail job application

TORONTO Wed Jul 15, 2009 8:21am EDT

A job seeker fills in an application form at a 'talent market' in China's southern city of Shenzhen February 3, 2009. REUTERS/Bobby Yip

A job seeker fills in an application form at a 'talent market' in China's southern city of Shenzhen February 3, 2009.

Credit: Reuters/Bobby Yip

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TORONTO (Reuters) - Typing mistakes in a job application can kill a would-be employee's chance of landing a job as employers bet that a sloppy resume means the applicant will do a sloppy job.

A telephone survey of 100 senior Canadian executives showed that more than a fifth of executives said a single typo on a resume or cover letter could cost a potential employee a job, while 28 percent said two mistakes would kill their chances.

The survey, published on Tuesday, was carried out by online job search firm Accountemps.

"The resume is an applicant's first chance to impress the hiring manager," said Kathryn Bolt, president of Accountemps' Canadian operations. "Mistakes on one's application materials may prompt employers to assume there also will be mistakes made on the job."

But 19 percent of the executives said they would still consider an applicant with four or more typos on their resume.

Common mistakes include: "Dear Sir or Madman", "I'm attacking my resume for you to review", "Following is a grief overview of my skills" and "Have a keen eye for derail.

(Reporting by Nina Lex; editing by Janet Guttsman)

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