Everyone knows the importance of writing a great resume but what often gets lost is the importance of writing a fantastic cover letter for that same resume. Cover letters are vastly important, they’re your introduction to hiring managers, and help guide the hiring manager to pick out the important parts of your resume and how they’ll help the company.
It’s well-known today that to not write a cover letter is committing job-applicant suicide. These cover letters come in all shapes and sizes. Some are extremely successful while others fail to get the hiring manager to read your resume. The goal with a cover letter is for that manager to read the resume and then the resume’s goal is for the manager to give you a call for an interview. The cover letter is where it starts. It doesn’t need to be long (a single page is best) but it needs to be detailed and effective.
Here are three ways to write that cover letter that gets your resume read:
- Detailed, but Brief. Go into detail about your accomplishments, but keep it brief. Say just enough to whet the appetite of the hiring manager. Just like show business, you always want to leave them wanting more. If you spearheaded a massive sales increase, don’t say how, just say a system you used led to it. The hiring manager will be curious.
- Relate Experience to Advertisement. Your job experience is not some abstract concept. It’s at the core of who you are and what you do. In your cover letter, explain how your experience will be an asset for this company. If you have experience in expanding your company’s profitability, give a short description on why your experience benefits this company.
- Be Personable. Your cover letter expresses your personality and is the first contact a hiring manager has with you. You don’t want to have your words come off as stale, otherwise your potential employer will view you as stale. Make it interesting and have your personality shine through. That’s how you get them to read your resume!
Ultimately, your cover letter will not win you the job. That’s not what it’s meant to do. The cover letter is a simple introduction, and if you follow the steps above, you’ll be making great introductions.