Non-Federal Resumes

When there is an email address and a telephone number on a non-Federal resume, why do you need a home address on the resume? I’m not sure how many companies actually mail responses back to an applicant via USPS due to the cost of postage.

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Corey McCarren

I’m pretty sure a big reason is to confirm whether or not the person lives in the area. It’s harder to get hired if you aren’t from the area because a lot of companies prefer not to have to relocate people. It took me months to get a gig off Long Island (thanks GovLoop!). Don’t quote me on it though, I’m not an HR person, hopefully someone that is answers your query.

Gail Sutton


Thanks so much for responding to my question. You are correct that most companies would prefer to hire someone local but if you are willing to relocate without the company paying your expense (like I recently did) you could include that in your cover letter. Some companies also post in their listing that relocation is not included. I’m going to post my question in the HR category as well.

Terrence (Terry) Hill

It has been a while since I was involved in recruitment, but the address is not as important as it used to. Some agencies still mail items, such as the selection package, fingerprint cards, and new employee orientation information to applicants. The address is also used to verify identity (especially for names that are the same), as well as background investigations. If your position requires a clearance, investigators will actually visit your neighbors. It is less important nowadays, because paycheck and paystubs are automated, but it’s good to have the home address in case it is needed for mailing of paper documents.

Camille Roberts

Excellent answers Terry and Corey. I would add that the address helps to confirm information while doing credit checks, in addition to the background check, and just validating you in general. In my experience, I think it is more of a red flag to leave it off than a good strategy. It just leaves too much to the imagination during the “screen out” phase. We need to make it easy for the hiring officials to hire, not give them anything to be curious about. With that said, there could be some good reasons why the address might be left off, but I would have to know the reason, and analyze it on a case-by-case basis. Then, I might address it in the cover letter, or possibly the body of the email.

In the private sector, even if you submit a résumé, at some point most generally, you will have to sign an application. The application will generally state something such as: I certify the information in this application is accurate and true.

When I was in HR, we would allow the résumé to be attached to the application, but the applicant would have to put their name, address, phone number, and sign the actual application. Then, they could write “Please see attached résumé” which, IF the résumé is physically attached, made the résumé legal and binding. A well-informed HR representative, would ask for an address to be at least on the application. Again, this has just been my experience.

Gail Sutton

Of course you should always include your address on the application but my point is why is the address needed on the resume? Terry you are correct that companies mail the selected candidates the benefits package, new employee orientation package, etc. I have always put my home address on my resume but it is the norm and people follow tend to follow tradition.

Thanks everybody for your input!

Andy Gravatt

There’s no question that putting an address on a resume is a good move. In the Washington Metropolitan area, we have some truly horrendous commutes and this can’t be ignored during the hiring process. I’d never deny an interview to a good candidate because they live too far away, but I’ve sure warned many new comers to our area that the 45 minute drive at lunch time can easily be 2.5 hours at rush hour. Getting all the way through the hiring process and letting them find this out on their first day at work is a disservice to them and to the organization that hired them.

A few years ago, I made the commute from Maryland to Tyson’s Corner every day and it averaged about 90 minutes each way. There were some days it took more than 2 hours. I had a client in Richmond and it always amazed me that I could get all the way to Richmond in less time and with less stress than Tyson’s Corner.

Dorothy Ramienski Amatucci

I think the point Andy makes is a good one. Having lived in this area for 15 years, I have watched commutes get worse and worse. I always consider addresses when I look for new jobs or internships — and I actually appreciate any employer who “warns” me about the commute ahead of time. It shows they are invested in their workforce and see them as more than just cogs in the machine.

Andy Lowenthal

I love that you raised this question, Gail. Clearly, a person’s home address in the recruiting stage is, and ought to be, irrelevant. It isn’t fair for HR or hiring officials to discriminate based on a person’s permanent address (regardless of whether they’re local, semi-local, or even an American citizen living overseas!) Who cares if relocation isn’t paid — that doesn’t mean hiring officials should decide for the applicant whether it’s too big of a move to self-finance. I know plenty of people of all ages who uproot their families to move long distances for the right job — and that doesn’t necessarily mean a later start date, either.

But, for the sake of argument, let’s say it does take an extra 4-8 weeks for someone to relocate from out-of-town. The bottom line: you want the right person for the role. And maybe that DOES mean relocation expenses. Don’t take no for an answer. HR is there to facilitate the recruiting and hiring of new talent — not thwart it!


As a recruiter, I don’t think it’s a hard and fast rule, but the thought crosses your mind – are they “hiding” something? I think it’s more that you notice the omission on something that’s an unwritten rule of formating of one’s resume.

On the flip side, many employers post job opportunities not providing their contact information. They are vague – omitting the company name, and/or location of the job. With many jobs listed online on websites such as Craigslist (which may or may not charge to post job announcements) – you have to wonder to whom you are providing your information to. There’s a real concern about your own personal information being provided to just anyone. How scary is it to know that they now know where you work, live, and were educated? Do you want to provide this to just anyone and find out they’ve now assumed your identity, or that you are now being targeted by a Marketing company via your email or home address? Definately think there are privacy concerns which may justify the omission of an address these days.

Gail Sutton

Thanks Andy!!! Many people are stuck in tradition. With today’s technology, there is no need for a home address to appear on non-Federal resumes when there is an email address and 1 telephone number listed. Several people stated that the home address is needed due to the communting factor. However, most major cities deal with serious traffic issues and adults should be aware of this when seeking employment. Due to the high cost of postage and the cost of labor that it takes for companies to mail letters to every potential applicant, many companies state on their website that only qualified applicants will be considered. In other words, ‘we are not going to mail rejection letters to 2,000 people.’ For example – an extreme example, Google received 2 million resumes in 2011 for 7,000 positions. Do the math – postage X personel hours = ?

Again, the home address should always be on the application.

Gail Sutton


You hit the nail on the head!!! You don’t want your home address floating around in cyber space due to privacy issues. As you stated, some companies especially small and midsize companies are vague about their location and don’t post their address in cyber space. There is no need for a home address to appear on a non-Federal resume. If a standard is implemented throughout the country that home addresses are not mandatory on non-federal resume but is mandatory on applications, there would be no need for people to be suspicious and wonder what you are hiding. You can also explain in your cover letter why you didn’t list your home address.

During the application process, you sign the application allowing companies to run background checks, credit checks, educational background checks, etc. and that’s perfectly in order.

BTW – my home address, email address, telephone number is currently posted on my resume but I just think that it’s time for a change.