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You know how important it is to look professional when you're job hunting. The labor market is intensely competitive, and the average duration of unemployment is at about 25 weeks. In this kind of environment, the merest slip of the keyboard can put your resume in the rejects pile.
So, how do you properly spell résumé? With two accents.
You probably know it's a French word, but did you know that the "e" with a line over it is called an "accent aigu?" Well, it is, and it's not hard to use, thanks to modern software that has you covered. There's even a cheat that can help you out if your keyboard is not cooperating, or you have exactly five minutes to meet the deadline.
How to Add the Dash Over the E in Résumé in MS Word
There are two standard ways to add the accent aigu in Microsoft Word (and one cheat).
The first way to add the accent aigu (or dash above the E) is to use the Symbols menu. Go to the "Insert" tab on the Word ribbon. At the far right is the Symbols icon. Click on the "Symbols" icon to open the Symbols and special characters drop-down menu. At the bottom, click "More Symbols." Choose subset "Latin-1 Supplement," which is near the top of the list. It looks like a list of Latin symbols. Select the "e" with the proper accent.
The second way is much easier, but you need to memorize it. The keyboard shortcut is to hold down the "Control" key and hit the apostrophe, then type "e." It's simple once you get the hang of it and works for capital letters as well as lowercase letters.
How to Add the Dash Over the E in Résumé in OpenOffice
OpenOffice is a popular alternative to MS Office. It includes a word processor similar to Word. When you open it and go to the "Special Characters" section, you can see that it works almost the same as Word when it comes to inserting accented characters. There are advanced options if you want, like switching your keyboard control software between languages, but that's a lot of fuss for just two accents.
How to Add the Dash Over the E in Résumé in Google Docs
Google Docs is even easier to work with because you have only one standard option (and one cheat). In your document control bar, go to "Insert," and then scroll down to "Special Characters." When you get the pop-up box, choose "Latin" in the middle dialogue box. Keyboard shortcuts don't work for accents in Google Docs, although they do help with a lot of other functions.
How to Add the Dash Over the E in Résumé in LibreOffice
LibreOffice is a popular, free and open source suite of office tools that includes a powerful word processor. LibreOffice resembles Word when it comes to inserting accents. It's the same "Insert," "Symbol/SpecialCharacter" process.
An Easy Cheat Way to Add the Dash Over the E in Résumé
You may be meticulous and eager to learn, but sometimes you don't want to pick up a new skill, master the software, or memorize keyboard shortcuts: You just want to put the E with the line over it in your résumé and send it out ASAP. Here's how you do that with the minimum of muss and fuss.
Open Notepad or some other easy plain text editor. Don't use word processing software for this; it'll just mess things up. Using the plain text editor removes all the formatting such as font and size.
Search the web for the term "Resume." The first result will probably be the Wikipedia entry for the word, and the little snippet contains the word with the accents above the two E's. Copy it and paste it into your text editor. Then, copy and paste from there into your actual résumé.
This is one cheat that won't get you a failing grade.
Lorraine Murphy has been writing on business, self-employment, and marketing since the turn of the 21st century. Her credits include Vanity Fair, the Guardian, Slate, Salon, Occupational Pursuit Magazine, the Daily Download, and Business in Vancouver. She has been a judge and mentor at Vancouver Startup Weekend multiple times, and is an in-demand keynote speaker.