By Laurie Smith
This is a question I hear ever more frequently from my executive clients; in years past, the answer to the question would have been a resounding "Yes!" However, in the cyberspace world we now occupy, the answer is not quite so simple, and would have to be an equivocal "It depends." Surely employers and recruiters have a legitimate need to know where candidates under consideration reside, for purposes such as evaluating whether relocation will be necessary/worthwhile and factoring in length of commute. (A long commute, whether you are willing or not, is perceived by an employer as an impediment to both your commitment to the position and potentially to reliability in being at work on time.) There is also the potential for giving the impression one is trying to hide something, which is never good. So there could be considerable push back from recruiters who want to see this information, or worse, omitting the information could eliminate you from consideration without your being aware of it.
However, there are legitimate and compelling reasons for leaving off your address. When your resume is uploaded to online sites and into corporate and recruiter databases, there is a potential for identity theft and security risk when details of residence and other contact information are supplied with a document that already reveals so many details that define you. In my view, putting your full address and your home phone number on a document that is widely accessible on the Internet is unwise. If you are sending your resume directly to a potential employer or recruiter, it will be relatively safe to include this information.
I recommend maintaining a variation of your document that provides one contact phone number (preferably cell), an email address (you may wish to set up a separate email address for job search), and your city, state, and zip of residence (street address omitted) for use online. You might also set up a P.O. box for your job search. However, as use of a P.O. box has tended historically to make employers think you are hiding something or do not really live in the area indicated, I recommend city, state, and zip only for online use. Including the zip will be sufficient in most cases for automated systems that screen resumes based on candidate location.