Creating an Email for Job Search: How To and Why You Should

Updated July 5, 2023

Many people use the internet as their primary means of job searching. Having a professional email address can help you optimize your job search and help you stay organized. Knowing when and how to set up a separate email account is a useful skill for job seekers. In this article, we explain why you might want a separate job searching email address, list the considerations for a job search email account, provide the steps for creating an email for job search and offer tips for appropriate job searching email etiquette.

Related: How to Have an Organized Job Search

Why should you create an email for a job search?

Many people correspond, both personally and professionally, over email. While you can use your personal email address or your current work email address for job hunting, there are a couple of considerations to review before doing so:

  • Personal email address: If you choose to use your personal email address for job searching, you might miss important emails from prospective employers due to the sheer volume of emails you receive from friends, family and companies daily.

  • Workplace email address: If you choose to use your workplace email address to receive correspondence from prospective employers, you might have to disclose your plans to leave your current position sooner than you intended if a colleague or supervisor sees your inbox.

When you create a separate, job searching specific email account, you can easily keep track of the emails and notices you receive from prospective employers. You can also create an account name that's professional but not directly related to your current job. Since your email address is one of the first pieces of information a company learns about you, consider it a part of your personal brand and use an account name that's straightforward and professional.

Related: 9 Job Search Strategies to Help You Find Your Dream Job

What to consider for job search email accounts

When you're preparing to set up your job search email account, consider these factors and criteria to help guide your process:

  • Direct: Ideally, the hiring manager or other email recipient should look at your email address and know immediately who you are without any additional information.

  • Memorable: Try to make your email address easy to remember, with no numbers or punctuation marks for the hiring manager to memorize or have to look up.

  • Name based: The best job search email addresses include your full name.

  • Individual: Make sure this is an individual account and not one you share with a partner or family member.

  • Non-identifying: If you need to include numbers or additional words in your email address because your name alone is already in use, try including your profession or your area code rather than your age or the year you were born.

  • Popular service: Use a popular, trustworthy and professional email service to host your address.

  • Searchable: Make sure hiring managers can easily find your messages in their inbox by just searching your name.

Related: 18 Tips for Reducing Job Searching Anxiety

How to set up an email account for a job search

Follow these steps to set up a professional job search email account:

1. Select a service

Before you can choose your email address name, you'll need to choose an email service to host your account. There are many to choose from, but you should select an option that's relatively well known, professional and easy to access on multiple devices like phones and tablets.

2. Choose your address

Once you've selected your email account service, navigate to that company's website and follow the setup instructions to establish your new account. The most important part of the setup will be selecting your new email address. Ensure you choose a professional moniker that represents you well.

3. Add a signature

After setting your address up, create a professional email signature, so when you send or respond to an email your signature will automatically populate. Include your full name and phone number in your email signature. You might also include your industry, potential job title or any licenses or certifications you hold in your signature.

4. Set up notifications

Go into the settings of your email account and ensure you set the notification settings up appropriately to alert you when you receive a new message or a response to an email you sent. Since you're using this account for job searching, you want to make sure you're aware when emails come in, so you can then respond to them quickly.

5. Consider auto replies

Depending on your current job or daily obligations, you may not be able to access or respond to emails immediately. Consider setting up an auto reply you can turn on for those times when you won't be able to check your email regularly, so the sender knows you've received their message and will get in touch with them shortly.

6. Subscribe to relevant messages

Consider subscribing to email lists like daily job postings or job searching tips. You can use the information you receive to help you find potential positions to apply for and to increase your job searching skills, hopefully resulting in job interviews and, ultimately, a job offer.

7. Set up mobile access

Most mobile devices have a native email application you can connect to your email service. Add your job search email account to your phone, so you can access your emails away from your computer. If your phone doesn't connect with your email service, see if the email service has a separate application you can download and use instead.

Related: How to Create and Use a Job Search Spreadsheet (With Example)

Tips for job searching email etiquette

Use these tips with your new job searching email address to send professional and effective messages to prospective employers:

  • Use the proper format: When you email friends and family, you can use informal language and structure in your emails. When you're communicating with hiring managers, ensure you follow the format of a business letter or business email to show your professionalism and formality.

  • Include the correct materials: If you're applying for a position through email or providing supplementary documents to a hiring manager, ensure you name any attachments appropriately with the title of the document and your name, so it's easy for the recipient to find and connect to you.

  • Proofread and edit: Before sending any messages, take the time to proofread your email and edit it as needed. Look for spelling and grammar errors first and then check for formatting and structure issues.

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