Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Cover Letter Writing Tips

Tip #1: Always Try To Submit One
Since you're usually up against many other candidates for the job, a cover letter is an ideal way to stand out. Although a cover letter might not be a requirement, make it a habit to include a well-written, customized letter with every resume you submit.

Tip #2: Make It Personal
How likely are you to read a letter that's addressed "To Whom It May Concern?" If you can, try to learn the name and title of the person making the hiring decisions - that way, you'll be able to personally address your cover letter, and have a much higher chance that your resume will get the attention it deserves.

Tip #3: Learn About The Job & The Company
Your chance of landing that first interview is greatly increased if you demonstrate some knowledge about the job you're applying for and the company hosting it. Read the job description very carefully, and research the company on the Internet. Go to a search engine such as www.google.com or www.yahoo.com, and type in the company name, then click on the company's web site.

Tip #4: Answer The Question: "How Can I Help This Employer?"
After you've read through the job description and learned about the company from the Web, you should have a good idea what they're looking for. Instead of using your cover letter to let them know what you're looking for, let the company know how you can meet their challenges by improving efficiencies, saving them money, etc. In the process you'll not only demonstrate an active interest in their organization, but stress why they should hire YOU for this job.

Tip #5: Use Your Own Voice
Resumes, by their nature, tend to be factual and very dry. A well-written cover letter, on the other hand, gives you an opportunity to communicate more directly with the employer, and come across uniquely and individually. Write as you'd speak, but express yourself professionally and emphasize what you can do for the company by talking about the results you have achieved.

Tip #6: Get To The Point
You're probably very busy trying to find a job, but keep in mind that the employer is even busier filling them. Although you want to customize each cover letter with job and company information, and show the wisdom of hiring you, it's best to keep your letter to at most two or three paragraphs. So stick to what's important, and put yourself in the reader's shoes: Is your letter interesting? Is it a quick read? Would you want to interview the person who wrote it?

Tip #7: Proofread, Proofread, Proofread!
A great cover letter is the perfect chance for you to show your stuff - it's also the perfect chance for you to ruin your chances with typos, misspellings, bad grammar, or factually incorrect information. Double- and triple-check your letter after you're done, and it might even help if you read it out loud. Share your letter with friends or family, and have them read and proof it, too.

Source : http://www.ultimatestaffing.com/

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