Today, most employers initially screen employees based on two documents: the resume and the cover letter. There are certain pitfalls that may cause a detail-oriented recruiter to immediately reject a candidate based on his/her cover letter:
-Typos or misspelled words (this can be particularly offensive if the recruiter's name or company name are misspelled!)
-Unspecific, generic content which does not relate to the specific job opening
-A casual or informal tone
What should a strong cover letter accomplish? A strong cover letter helps to complete your resume and fill in gaps. It tells the reader something new. It draws connections between your previous jobs, and raises themes that may be of value to the company to which you are applying.
For instance, if you are applying for a position as a sales clerk, you might show how all of your previous roles have helped you develop an ability to work with all types of people, manage many tasks, or effectively market a product. If you are applying to be a consultant at a top organizational consulting firm, you might show how your previous work helped you hone analytical, qualitative skills, as well as the ability to partner with team members at all levels. A common structure for cover letters is as follows:
-Brief Introduction explaining who you are and what role you are applying for
-1-2 paragraphs fleshing out your most important career experience (and the experience that relates most to this particular job)
-Closing paragraph that emphasizes why this company is right for you, and also why you are right for this company
We hope this helps you to think about how to draft your first cover letter, or revise your current one. As always, email us with any questions you may have!
All the best,
Ivy Eyes Editinghttp://www.ivyeyesediting.com