Last week we asked job seekers, via Facebook and Twitter, what career topics they would like more advice on. A good majority of our connections expressed an interest in getting tips on writing cover letters. That being said, we’ve compiled a list of the top cover letter writing tips from Atrium’s staffing experts.
1. Reference the company, industry, department and position – This is probably a Recruiter/Manager’s biggest pet peeve. Make your cover letter relevant to the position that you’re sending it in for! Don’t have a general cover letter you send everywhere, nobody will read it.
2. Get rid of the fluff – Keep it concise and focus on areas of your background that are connected to the opportunity. Recruiters/Managers rarely look at resumes and cover letters for more than 1 or 2 minutes. Often when people are trying to sell themselves, they use more verbose language than they ever would in another setting. Most positions in the business world require candidates who are succinct and efficient and a wordy cover letter portrays the opposite message.
3. Do not just repeat what is in your resume – Use the cover letter as an opportunity to sell attributes that would make you a good fit for the position you are applying for that cannot be seen with a quick glance at your resume.
4. Include information regarding how you learned about the position or organization – It is great to give feedback directly relating to how you found out about the position. Was it an online job posting? A friend who works at the organization? It is appropriate to mention the name of someone who suggested that you write.
5. Don’t write a cover letter to your cover letter – The email you write to the Recruiter/Manager should be considered the cover letter. Don’t attach it in a pdf/word doc.
Now, get writing!
– Allie B.