In today’s technologically advanced job market, are cover letters really that important? While most job seekers hope not, the short answer is: yes. As one of Southern New England’s top employment agencies, Stewart Recruitment Group can tell you that hiring managers and recruiters still rely heavily on them during their screening process.
And yet, these are often treated like an afterthought or something to check off your to-do list. What you might not be thinking about is that your cover letter is the first impression you make on employers. So it’s well worth it to invest time and effort into writing a great one. To help you in the process, here are a few key tips to follow:
Provide new information.
In many cases, candidates simply rehash what’s on their resume. But this is a waste of space because it offers another opportunity to set yourself apart from other candidates. Instead, make sure you’re focusing on new information, such as sharing a story as to why you’d be a good fit for the position. Other ideas for what to include in your cover letter:
- If you share a mutual contact with the hiring manager
- A pertinent project you worked on that would be of interest to them
- What appeals to you about working for the company and how your skills would be a fit
- Any special abilities or unique experience that sets you apart
Personalize it to each position.
When a hiring manager receives a boilerplate cover letter, they know it. Instead, make sure you’re personalizing yours to each job opening. That doesn’t mean you have to rewrite it from scratch. But do take the time to review the posting, think through your most relevant skills and strengths, and incorporate those into your letter.
Put to use a standard business format.
Even if you’re sending a cover letter via email, don’t approach it in a casual way. This isn’t a quick message to a friend or co-worker. Instead, your letter should follow a standard business format with a salutation, body copy and close.
Proofread it carefully.
Finally, before you send in any cover letter to a potential employer, make sure you’re carefully proofreading it. You can make the strongest case for why a hiring manager should consider you for an interview. But if you have typos in your letter, you’re going to sabotage that effort.
Need more help with your job search?
Call Stewart Recruitment! As one of Southern New England’s top employment agencies, we know what employers want out of candidates and can help you position yourself more effectively, so you land the job you want. Contact us today if you’re ready to get started…and get a new job!