How To Deal With a Company Name Change on Your Resume

Worked for a company that’s now changed its name (or closed entirely)? Here’s exactly how to address it on your resume, including examples.

5 months ago   •   7 min read

By Resume Worded Editorial Team
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What’s in a name? Quite a bit, actually.

Company name changes aren’t at all uncommon — but that doesn’t mean they don’t need to be addressed. While you might know instinctively that the company you listed as Company A on your resume is now Company B, most recruiters aren’t going to have the same background. So, whether it was due to a merger, acquisition, or large-scale rebranding, here’s how to tackle a company name change on your resume.

The four ways to list a company's name change on a resume

The main ways to list a company's name change on your resume
The main ways to list a company's name change on your resume

There are a few optimal ways of labeling a company name change on your resume, depending on your specific circumstances. If you worked at a company formerly known as the Alphabet Company that now goes by ABC Company, here are some practical examples of how to list that on your resume.

List only the current name of the company

Don’t want to make a big deal of it? In pretty much all cases, you don’t have to. Simply list the company on your resume under its current name, like this:

Job Title, Current Company Name
Location + dates of employment

For example, here's how it could be added into an actual resume:

ABC Company, New York, NY
Project Manager, 2017 - Present

or, as an alternative:

Project Manager, ABC Company
New York, 2017 - Present

You could choose to leave off the company's previous name for a few reasons:

  • The company name change was a long time ago, and the new name is already well known in your industry.
  • You joined after the name was changed.
  • The previous name has 'bad press' — i.e. they were in the news for the wrong reasons and you don't want to call attention to it (even if you did nothing wrong).
  • The previous company name and new company name are equally known in your industry.

Choosing between listing your company name first or your job title is just a matter of what's more impressive. If you work for a big-name company that changed its name, list the company name first and then your job title.

List the current name of the company followed by the previous name

If you want to clarify the previous name of the company, simply add that in parentheses after its current name, like this:

Job Title, Current Company Name (formerly Previous Company Name)
Location + dates of employment

For example, here's how it might look on a resume:

Deal with a company name change on your resume by listing the current and previous name of the company

or in text format:

ABC Company (formerly Alphabet Company), New York, NY
Project Manager, 2017 - Present

List the previous name first followed by the current name

If you have a good reason for wanting to list the previous name of the company more prominently (like if it’s a recent change and the company is better known under its former name), you can list it like this:

Job Title, Previous Company Name (now Current Company Name)
Location + dates of employment

For example, here's what it looks like on a resume:

If the previous company name was well-known, list it first on your resume
If the previous company name was well-known, list it first on your resume

How to show a company acquisition

If the company went through a merger or acquisition, you can also specify that:

Label accompany name change on your resume by specifying the date of acquisition
Label accompany name change on your resume by specifying the date of acquisition

Hiring managers love to see if your role evolved or changed when the company went through a merger or acquisition. If you adjusted well to a new role, it shows the ability to adjust to new situations, develop new skills and work with new team members.

Explicitly label a merger on your resume if both company names were well-known
Explicitly label a merger on your resume if both company names were well-known

List your positions separately under each company name

If there were large-scale changes or restructuring along with the name change, it might make sense to list the positions separately, like this:

Job Title, New/Current Company Name
Location + dates of employment

Job Title, Previous Company Name (acquired by New/Current Company)
Location + dates of employment

For example:

If the company name change was due to a major restructuring, list both positions separately under each company name
If the company name change was due to a major restructuring, list both positions separately under each company name

This is a good idea if you held a very different role when the company went through a restructuring, or you had to apply for that new role when you moved positions.

Use a resume checker

The best way to make sure your resume is formatted correctly, including any company name changes, is to have someone else proofread it or to quickly run it through a free online resume checker. These can highlight any errors or inconsistencies and give you instant feedback on how to improve your resume.

Choosing how to list a company name change

Listing just the current name of your company is fine in most situations, especially if you’ve only worked at the company under its current name or if you were otherwise unaffected by the name change. Hiring managers don’t need a detailed history of every company you’ve ever worked at, which means they‘re unlikely to care that your company once operated under a different name.

That said, there are some situations when it may be a good idea to list the previous name of a company on your resume:

If the previous company name was well-known

Sometimes, rebrandings don’t quite take. If the company name change was very recent, or if your company was much better known (or even instantly recognizable) under its previous name, it makes more sense to list it under that name on your resume.

If you worked for the company under a different name

If a company has changed its name since you worked there, it might make sense to specify the company name as it was when you were there — especially if your references are also likely to know or refer to the company by its former name.

If there was a major restructure

If the company name change wasn’t just a superficial change, but also signified a major restructure, it can make more sense to list both company names on your resume. This goes double if your role changed significantly under the changes, like if you were promoted or moved to a different position.

By the way, showing a progression of skills or responsibilities while there were big company changes or restructurings is a big plus to hiring managers — it shows a lot of adaptability.

If you played a large role in the merger or acquisition

If you’re planning to reference the company name change elsewhere on your resume, make sure you list both names to avoid confusion. So if you played a big role in a merger, acquisition, or restructuring, or you want to highlight accomplishments related to the company name change, it makes sense to use a more descriptive company heading that includes the name change.

Listing companies that don't exist, are defunct or are no longer in business

What if a company you once worked for is now defunct, closed down, or simply no longer exists? That doesn’t mean you need to scrub it from your resume! Much like a company name change, you can deal with this by simply listing the company name as it was when you worked there.

If you’re still worried about it, here are a few do’s and don’ts for your resume:

  • Do list the company as normal on your resume. You don’t need to proactively offer that the company has now closed.

If you lost your job, or were laid off because the company shut down, it does make sense to highlight that on your resume. This emphasizes to hiring managers that you weren't dismissed for performance-related reasons.

Let's look at a quick example if this is the case:

Senior Analyst,  2004-2008
Lehman Brothers (shut down in 2008), New York
  • Don’t worry that it will reflect badly on you. Hiring managers understand that companies go out of business and that it isn’t a reflection of your job performance.
  • Don’t go into too many details on your resume. Potential employers can easily verify the information on your resume via a reference check, business registration information, IRS, or even with a quick Google search.
  • Don’t use it as an opportunity to fudge the details of your employment, like changing your job title or lying about how long you worked there. These details can still be discovered, even if the company has now closed, and lying on your resume is instant cause for dismissing your application (and may be grounds for firing, if you lie and get the job anyway).
  • Do answer any questions simply and directly. If you’re asked about it in a job interview, you can just say that the company has closed down since you worked there.
  • Do be prepared to provide additional evidence if necessary. This is unlikely to be a problem, but if issues arise with a background check, you can resolve them by providing old payslips or W-2 forms.

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