August 2, 2012
Cover Letter Basics
A cover letter is an invitation for a hiring manager to read your resume. Hiring managers usually have an order to which they read your submitted documents. That order would be cover letter, then resume, and then any supporting documents. You want your cover letter to grab their attention and draw them in. After reading your cover letter they should want to learn more about what it is you have to offer their company. This can be your make or break introduction. First thing first, you need to be prepared. The majority of business’s that you will be applying for positions at, will have a website. Research the company. If not only researching for your cover letter, research the company for yourself as well. A company’s website can give a lot of information on how the company runs, events they hold, how involved they are in the community, etc. Take note of bits of information that you may be able to use for conversation purpose at the interview you are going to get, as well. Check out their company history page. This gives you an idea of how long the company has been in business. Is it a family owned business? Is it a couple of friends that started this business? How many locations do they have? Finding out as much as you can, about how the company got started, can only make you feel more confident and knowledgeable when writing your amazing cover letter. Your interest in the company and not just the paycheck they will be giving you can differentiate you from all the other applicants. Make sure to know the job you are applying for like the back of your hand. Print out the job description. Make a T chart on a sheet of paper. In the left column, make a list of your job skills, abilities, and achievements. In the right column, list the job requirements, duties, and responsibilities. Draw lines connecting the columns where your skills or abilities match up with their...