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I Made a Mistake on My Resume!

You found an amazing job opportunity.  You customized your resume, wrote a great cover letter, and hit 'send'.  That's when you saw the error!  Ugh!  Have you already ruined your chances of getting this job?  What do you do now?  It depends.  This is a tricky situation that needs to be dealt with carefully.  Here are some tips that will help you ensure that this error doesn't cost you the job:

Consider letting it go.  Addressing your mistake calls attention to it.  There is a possibility that the employer didn't see your mistake or that they didn't care about it, but if you mention it to the employer, you are bringing it to the forefront.  If it's just a typo or a formatting error, it might not be in your best interest to mention it.  While they may perceive you as sloppy or careless, do you think that calling attention to your mistake will change that perception?

Follow up.  If the mistake that you made was related to your contact information, then you need to correct it or the employer may not be able to get in touch with you.  The best way to do it is to follow up on the position and to give them your updated contact information at that time.  It may turn out to be a blessing in disguise if you make a positive impression on your follow up call.

Send an updated resume.  If the mistake that you made was substantial, like forgetting to mention your most relevant experience, then you might have to send them a new resume.  You can either email it to them or bring it in person.  Just say that you wanted to make sure that they have the most up to date version of your resume.  They might still look at your old resume, but it is worth a try!. 

Fix it.  Now that you have gone through this awkward situation, you need to make sure that it never happens again.  Fix the mistake on all versions of your resume and do a careful check to make sure there aren't any other errors on there.  Ask a friend or family member to review it.  Take five minutes to carefully proofread your resume whenever you are sending it out.

Submitting a resume with a mistake feels terrible.  You are trying so hard to make an impression and then you do something that makes you look so sloppy!  However, you need to forgive yourself. We all make mistakes sometimes.  Do your best to address it and move on to the next opportunity. 

(Written by Karen Bivand, Image Courtesy of Ningmilo at