Cover letters are possibly the single most neglected part of any resume. Some people dread them so much that they either briefly gloss over them or they decide to completely omit them. Both of these strategies are big mistakes. A well written cover letter can draw attention to your resume and entice prospective employers to look inside and discover who their next hire may be. The difference between it and your resume is that cover letters allow you to highlight the qualifications you have for the specific job in which you are applying; resumes expand upon the those qualities, skills and experiences in greater detail. As a top staffing firm in New York we can say that sending out a resume without a cover letter is almost unheard of these days. That being the case, we’ve compiled some tips that may help you to produce truly outstanding cover letters.
- Sell the company on how you will be an asset to them if hired: Hiring managers desire to know what you will bring to the company. They want to know that you are already a valuable asset that they should not overlook. Your resume itself can give specific examples of how you aided similar companies.
- Make sure your cover letter is not one size fits all: As we said before, cover letters give applicants a chance to customize their resume package to a specific position/person. Experienced hiring managers can tell almost immediately whether or not you are using a boilerplate cover letter.
- Address it to a direct contact: If you can, find out whom you are writing to within the organization and address your cover letter to him/her. Tailoring your cover letter to a specific person can put your resume and cover letter right into the hands of hiring professionals over others who have not made the same effort.
- Research the company thoroughly: According to Steve Hassinger, career services director at Central Penn College, very few applicants bother to research the company to which they are applying. There are many resources out there for applicants to use in researching companies. Use them wisely and bone up on your prospective future employer.
- Add a call-to-action: Make it clear to your prospective employer what it is you want them to do and that you also intend to follow up. For instance, add a timeline as to when you will reach out to them again.
Finally, the most important thing to remember about cover letters is to make sure that they speak to the hiring agent in a way that is confident but not cocky. Employers come to staffing companies in NYC in order to recruit applicants who know the difference and who will be an asset to their companies.