Email Addresses - Cut out the Jokes

  | Andy Dalziel

Every CV or cover letter should contain a candidate’s private email address so a prospective employer can contact them. Yet, many times, candidates shoo themselves in the foot by using inappropriate or jokey email addresses. This may be fine with friends or in a social situation. For work though, such addresses are completely unsuitable – at the very least an employer will find them inappropriate; worse they may consider them offensive and a reason to reject a candidate out of hand.

Your email is often the first impression you make on somebody. And, as in all walks of life, first impressions count.

Whilst an email address such as, or may be funny to you, don’t assume an employer is going to get the joke (these email addresses are adapted from real examples, by the way!).

There are a few basic rules when it comes to creating an appropriate email for your job search:

·       Make it professional. Avoid email addresses with nicknames, hobbies, names of pets or anything other than your name;

·       Make it simple. The best email addresses are simple and easy to understand. Numbers and symbols should be avoided as they can cause confusion;

·       Make it appropriate. A professional email address can help convince an employer you are a serious and credible candidate;

·       Make it separate. Open a new email account for professional purposes and keep it separate from any personal correspondence. Never use an existing work email account. Employers usually have permission to scrutinise anything on a work-related computer. If you haven’t told them you are looking for a new job, things could get very uncomfortable for you.


A professional email address won’t get you a new job in itself. But an inappropriate one can mean you create a bad first impression or even get rejected out of hand. Don’t use an inappropriate or funny email address when applying for a new job – or the joke may be on you!

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