Friday, June 08, 2007

Previous Employer Relocated

I was wondering what to do on a job application/resume if some of my former employers have moved, sometimes to multiple locations.

by Wendy Gelberg, career coach and resume writer

Good question - it comes up a lot in this fast-changing economy. Companies move, close, get acquired, and morph into entirely new entities from the ones we worked for. A job application most likely will require you to sign a statement that the information you are providing is accurate, and you want to be sure that, in fact, it is.

The simplest approach is to list the location where you actually worked at the time, even if the company is no longer located there. That is where you reported to work, and to list a different location wouldn’t accurately represent your work history. If you have the current information, you can note the new address in parentheses or, in the case of multiple locations, indicate the address and phone number of the corporate headquarters. By providing current information about a former employer, you enable a prospective employer to verify your work history, and you are presenting both the past and the present accurately.

The same principle would apply to other corporate changes – indicate the company name as it was when you worked there, and then add a comment that the name has since changed or that the company has closed. To see the logic of this strategy, think about the impression the new employer would get if you presented only the current information – it would appear that you worked in a place where you may never have set foot. Or, to take this to its most absurd, what if you gave current information for a company that no longer exists – then you have a nonexistent employer and it would appear as though you had worked for no one at all! Naturally, that wouldn’t make sense.

So stick with the facts as they were at the time, with a clarifying note that provides current information, and then you’ve covered all the bases.

Best of luck with your job search.

Wendy Gelberg, M.Ed., helps job seekers communicate effectively and confidently, in speech and in writing, to get unstuck in their job search.

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