With the job market being as competitive it is, candidates need to utilize whatever upper edge they have to get noticed by recruiters. A cover letter is a great way to do that. Since a resume is used to highlight all of your achievements/work experience and should use many quantitative measures in order to exemplify this, the cover letter is a great opportunity to use a little creativity and really show why you would be a great fit for the company.
A few things to keep in mind when writing your next cover letter:
1. Short and simple is the way to go. It is critical to remember to be as clear and concise as possible when writing your cover letter. A cover letter should be no longer than a page in total and should be arranged in paragraphs varying in length between 4-6 sentences (this does not apply to the opening and closing sentence of the cover letter).
2. Show that you’ve researched the company. Using the cover letter as an opportunity to show that you have conducted research on the company is great way to show your passion and interest for the position.
3. Provide key examples of your background which are relevant to the opportunity. Even though you may have had great previous employment, education, or life experiences which you are proud of, the important thing to remember is if they are not applicable to this job, then the cover letter is not the place to discuss them.
4. Market yourself. It is imperative to remember that you need to focus on what you can do for the company and not what the company can do for you. This is a common mistake in many cover letters.
5. Request a meeting at the end of the cover letter. Also, remember to thank the individual for taking the time to review your application and set the timeline in which you will follow up with them.
6. Avoid submitting generic cover letters. Recruiters/hiring managers see this one a lot and it is very obvious when a candidate has simply just changed the company and position they are applying for. It shows that you are lacking interest for the company and/or position and this can really hurt your chances of getting an interview.
When writing your next cover letter with your with an online job application, try to keep these few things in mind.
If you have any other tips or effective cover letter secrets feel free to let me know!