Employer Tips
  Jobseeker Tips
By Jobstar

Should you change your name to enhance your job prospects?  Would you?

There are pros and cons on both sides of the fence.  The first consideration is your pride, your ancestry and most importantly whether you should cave in and let the existing system defeat you. 

You may be stubborn, you may be dead right in keeping your own name but the long and the short of it is that you need a job, and despite all of the multi-cultural acceptance that is governed by anti-discrimination law in Australia it is a fact that many employers have just not moved into the twenty-first century and are ignoring your applications for work. 

The trick is to get to the interview stage and be able to sit in front of an employer or the HR personnel after they have short-listed you for an interview.  This gives you the opportunity to impress them.  The fastest way to do this is to change your name to an Anglo-Saxon one. That is both your first name and your surname. 

I hear howling, I hear people saying that this is just not right.  I agree that it is not right, but when a person needs to work, has the qualifications, job skills and experience and has put in hundreds of applications without an interview there has to be a way to jump over hurdles.  Once that person is financially established it is so easy to change your name back to its original one. 

There are difficulties, such as having university degrees and trade certificates in your original name, having to change the name on your driver’s licence, passport, bills and other documents.  But these issues can all be overcome.

As each group of New Australians arrive they find that they are at the bottom of the heap and that they are forming a significant percentage of those who are applying for jobs. The anti-discrimination laws are crystal-clear but are effectively being ignored by too many employers as they filter out names that they are not used to.  The net effect is that the numbers of recent migrants are filling the lists of resumes submitted to employers.

There are plenty of people who have not changed their name and have made it.  On the other hand, others have.  When the cupboard at home is bare, or you find that despite your skills and qualifications you are being ignored there is a choice that you can make.

Changing your name is one way to play the game.  It may be distasteful but it can help you get to first base.