What do to about copy/pasting resume into job listing?
April 16, 2012 11:35 AM   Subscribe

Job posting copy/pasted resume/LinkedIn profile. What to do?

My spouse, who does something fairly specific in a fairly small industry, was asked to apply for a consulting position through a former coworker at former coworker's new workplace. Spouse gave his resume and a proposal. Spouse was turned down. The impression was given that spouse was too expensive for them.

Fast forward 2 weeks and job is posted all over the industry job boards and it is entirely copied and pasted out of spouse's resume and LinkedIn profile... they constructed it from the two separately and mixed it up into this new job posting.

My/his concerns are

1. that if anyone searches any part of spouse's resume/LinkedIn profile, that job posting or a cache of it will show up and it will look like spouse copy/pasted.

2. this is a really small industry and people know my spouse and would possibly recognize his skill set in this posting (don't know if that is a problem tho).

3. his current employer is probably going to see this posting and might wonder why spouse's description is in it (current employer doesn't know that we're moving).

4. that is just not cool of this other organization.

BUT, spouse might be interested in short-term consulting for this organization in the future, so he doesn't want to piss them off.

So, my thought is that spouse should email his two contacts and say: "I got this job posting today and I noticed that it is copy and pasted from my resume and LinkedIn. My main concern is that people will think that *I* copy and pasted from you rather than the reverse. I'd appreciate if you took this post down ASAP (even though I am afraid that the damage is already done) and repost with new text."

But, for you all, is there something else that he should do? Should he just forget it and keep his resume and LinkedIn as it is? Should he rephrase it?
posted by k8t to Work & Money (9 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
It is probably significantly easier to have your spouse rewrite his LinkedIn and jazz up his resume than it will be to get some person at this other org to change their write up. Your reasoning and logic isn't exactly tortured, so it wouldn't take, it seems, too much effort to have gotten to these conclusions if the other org cared or had thought it through. That doesn't speak too well for the probable outcome of asking them to make it right.
posted by Medieval Maven at 12:19 PM on April 16, 2012

Perhaps make the email less confrontational, giving them an out to say, "Oh, what a mistake!" while still getting across the seriousness of the issue.

Something like:
Dear Name of contact,

Thanks again for considering me for position X. I'm writing because I wanted to notify you of a potential error in a job posting of yours that I came across in my continued job search. It seems there has been a mistake: this job posting, which consists of material from my own resume and LinkedIn profile, appeared on website where your husband found it posted by your company on date it was posted. It seems someone may have accidentally posted my own details instead of the requirements for the position you are trying to fill! As such an erroneous posting might cause problems for both of us down the road, I'm sure you'd agree that it would be best if the posting were corrected ASAP with the proper job requirements instead of my information.

My main concern is that, as this is a small industry, and many people know my credentials well, people might think that you copied and pasted my details into your posting intentionally. (I'm sure that's not what happened, but as you know it can be difficult to dispel this kind of erroneous impression once it has taken hold.) Likewise, were someone who isn't so familiar with the industry to come across the erroneous posting as I continue my job search, they might think that *I* copied and pasted from you, though as we both know this is clearly not the case.

I'd appreciate if you took down the post with the material from my resume and LinkedIn profile ASAP and re-posted it with the job description that was originally intended. Please let me know if for some reason this isn't possible. As this is a recruiting issue, and your HR office might have the best knowledge of how to fix this error, I've cc'd them on this letter.

I look forward to seeing you at industry conference where everyone sees each other later this year.

Mr. k8t
Description of Mr. k8t's role which is verbatim from his materials, and thus, verbatim from their problematic job posting

cc: Name of HR manager, HR Manager, Name of company who posted the position"
Of course, you'll want to use different wording so they won't google the text of the letter and end up at this very AskMe question.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:21 PM on April 16, 2012 [10 favorites]

I've been in a similar situation (pre LinkedIn era) ...

Based on that experience, my further experience in corporate life a couple decades on, I'd probably want to talk to the company (as well as change up my LinkedIn wording for two reasons*).

Not necessarily speak for action the contacts, unless they are primarily responsible for creating the ad. But if the only course is to go through them and not further up the chain to HR (in person), then I'd note, as you said, that there is a likely unintentional duplication of his experience and public-facing profile showing up as the company's new ad (forwarded/linked in the email). He'd like contacts to speak to HR, or to speak to HR directly about correcting this to avoid any appearance of impropriety on either side.

I think avoiding a direct accusation of intentional wrongdoing gives the person(s) responsible for an out to adjust it, and it can be implied in further communication if needed that changing it also avoids it looking as though an ad were written just for your spouse to exclude all others (I hate going in to an interview where I'm just there to look like a good candidate pool from where the pre-determined employee would be hired).

*redoing LinkedIn - when I was job hunting I tailored the resume to each job application, and I used LinkedIn (and still do) as less of a resume and more of a summary. "At [this place] I was the [role] and did a number of things such as X, Y, Z" where a resume would give the title, a shorter description with HR-friendly terms and bullet lists.
posted by tilde at 12:22 PM on April 16, 2012

Don't email, call. Either the former coworker or the person he submitted the proposal to, and let them know his info must have slipped into that posting by mistake. E-mail sucks at conveying tone. An actual conversation will allow him to get his point across while stressing that he's sure it's all a simple misunderstanding and that he himself is always CTRL-Ving when he should have been CTRL-Xing, ho ho ho. Anyway, if they ever reconsider using him to fill that need they know where to find him. He's expensive, but very professional.
posted by IanMorr at 12:22 PM on April 16, 2012 [6 favorites]

I like ocherdraco's language, but tilde and IanMorr's suggestion of calling and saying it, rather than emailing it.
posted by anitanita at 12:28 PM on April 16, 2012

Whatever you do, promise in your email that you will call to follow-up in a couple of days.
posted by KokuRyu at 12:37 PM on April 16, 2012

Thanks all. He's calling tonight with ocherdraco's script plus annotations from y'all.
posted by k8t at 4:47 PM on April 16, 2012

Good luck to you both! (With the call, and with your spouse's job search.)
posted by ocherdraco at 5:17 PM on April 16, 2012

Of course now he's getting all the daily digests and it is all over the place. A resume and Linked tune to is probably required now.
posted by k8t at 5:23 PM on April 16, 2012

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