Writing a Cover Letter for a Resume. If you are hunting for a new job you may have a good resume prepared. You have a list of good companies you have targeted to submit them to. However, the question remains to be answered is that how will you make a notable impression while introducing yourself to the employer?
Many people think that a cover letter is not required, while others are confused about what should be included in the cover letter. If you have doubts regarding the cover letter then the following article will help you clear those doubts and help you write a great cover letter giving you that an edge!
Is a cover letter required to go along with the resume? The answer is YES. Whether you are applying for a job by yourself or through a recruiter, the cover letter is one of the most essential prerequisites for a job application. In most cases, big companies recruit people in the hundreds every few months and they have to go through thousands of applications and resumes. Also, there will be openings for different positions. So, it is important to mention the position that you are applying for. This can be achieved through a Cover Letter.
A Cover Letter can be described as a statement of purpose. One objective of the cover letter is to highlight your strengths that are described in your resume.
What does the job require? In addition to your specialized qualifications and skills, your work experience in different environments, coordination with different teams, and your experience in handling critical are qualities you ought to mention. All these capabilities can be mentioned in your cover letter. Your resume will list your educational background and your experience. Why you are successful in your given filled is presented through your cover letter. For example, you have mentioned about handling the sales teams across the Asian subcontinent in your cover letter, then the recruiter will automatically search for that experience in your resume and spend more time reading it keenly. Thus you can describe your important role more briefly in your cover letter.
Recognize your prospective employer. This is one aspect which is important that most people are unaware of it. Individuals tend to focus too much on themselves. A recruiter is going to hire not because you posses specific qualities, they also look for character. One manner to exhibit that is to focus on the requirements of the employer. A good rule of thumb is to acknowledge them in your resume. Using You means to recognize the requirements of the employer and then moving gradually to I.
Mention their requirements, and describe your strengths and experience relevant to the position they are looking for. Let them know that you see yourself as a part of their team. You must describe that the combination of their company and your skills can bring great success to the company. You can stress on how your skills can bring change or improvement in their process and products. You must describe in brief your skills and experience combined with the company’s resources can bring out a turnaround or benefit them. Remember to do a thorough research about the company, their operations, their main line of business and the role you will be playing in their company.
Who is the cover letter addressed to? Whenever you write a cover letter, it should be addressed to a specific individual. In case you don’t know the person, make time to find out to address it to the correct person. Ensure that the name of the concerned person is spelled correctly and his designation is mentioned appropriately.
Does it match your resume? This information may be in your resume, the cover letter highlights important achievements or skills you possess. The other benefit of the cover letter is it provides personal insight about your competency and personality.
Can I use the same cover letter again for another company? This may take you less time and effort, but it is certainly not the right thing to do. As mentioned above, the fact that you posses some skills is not the only thing, but they should also match with the requirements of the company. So, it is recommended to highlight those skills which are relevant to the company you applying with and modify your cover letter accordingly. It should not take a lot of time tailoring your cover letter correctly. A well written cover letter shows your discipline and genuine interest in being associated with the company.
How to conclude? A cover letter is a call to action, whether from your side or theirs. For example, you can write that you would be looking forward to their positive response or you may also ask them for a reply over the phone. However, you may write anything that you may like, but don’t forget this part of the letter.
REVIEW You have to go through the entire letter once again. There should be no room for error in your resume, it should be the same with your cover letter. You may ask someone else to take a read through the entire letter, and a spell check is a must is recommended.
Email Cover Letters: Though you have to include all the above points, but in such a way that it remains short. All the highlights and key points of your skills must be completed in 2 to 3 sentences. But you must always make sure that you are writing the cover letter in the context of the job opening. Don’t be too creative with the font size and font style. Just keep the font size simply to 10 and the font style as Arial.
You may break the content in 2 or 3 paragraphs depending upon the content. In an email cover letter, the subject line becomes very important. So, try to write a good subject line which highlights your profile and makes it very clear about the position that you are applying for. If you can keep the subject line short and simple, that will be an added advantage.
Maintaining a certain image: Although it is important to highlight your abilities and showcase your skills, but at the same time it is also very important that the letter depicts your personality. Don’t try to sound more aggressive of a person if you are more of a simple and soft natured. Also make sure that you are not sounding like a salesman who is desperate to sell his wares. Be enthusiastic but don’t over do it!
Just remember, if your cover letter is not up to the mark then there are more chances that the recruiter may not open the much important attachment, i.e. your resume. This means you may not even get a chance to demonstrate your skills to the recruiter even though you are fit for the opening. If you don’t include a cover letter in the first place itself, then the chances of not opening the attachment increases further. The cover letter has one added benefit.
If by the time your resume reached the recruiter, they had already short listed someone else, then while sending the reply, thank you for the interest but the vacancy is filled, your application will get saved in their minds and your resume in their database and they will surely consider your resume in the future openings of the company. This gives you an extra chance that you will need while searching for a new job in the future.