In our technology-based world, applying to jobs can feel like nightmare. When you’re applying to jobs on Google, LinkedIn, Indeed, etc. and have no contact information to follow-up with the job poster or HR department, it can feel like you’re sending your resume into the void and crossing your fingers that you’ll hear back from someone.
Looking for a job is a full-time job and applying to jobs is a numbers game. Sometimes you can spend hours submitting applications to numerous positions and end up getting maybe one or two responses.
While there’s no guarantee that a cover letter will land you an interview, there’s a chance that it could appeal to the right Hiring Manager. Here are some tips for writing strategically sell yourself in your cover letter to make your application stand out:
Answer the important questions
“Why are you the right for the job?” Explain how your current/past duties are directly related to the those of the position you are applying to.
“How will you benefit the organization?” If you have them, include metrics on how you impacted your current/previous company. You can also discuss how you impacted company culture here!
Show enthusiasm for the employer and their mission
A candidate that’s excited about a role and specific organization will look better than the candidate who doesn’t seem to care. In a paragraph or so, explain why you’re interested in this company and this position. For instance, if you’re applying to a sales position at a company that produces pharmaceuticals, talk about how you enjoy developing strong working relationships and how you believe medicine positively impacts patients’ lives.
Tell a story that may not be gathered from your resume
Resumes are a concise summary of your current/past employment and education while cover letters allow you to discuss other important, related matters. If there are things you’d like to explain/highlight on your resume, whether it be gaps in employment, changing positions/industries, or how you repeatedly exceeded your quota , the cover letter is where you can say this.
“You can have multiple cover letters that speak to different industries but be sure to use the right one. Compensation and gaps in employment should definitely be addressed – but briefly – very briefly!” says Sharon Tsao, CMO at Contemporary Staffing Solutions.
Keep in mind: LinkedIn can be your best friend and the ultimate tool in finding a new position—especially if you can find contact information!
Before being invited to interview, employers will typically review your resume and your LinkedIn profile. Make sure your LinkedIn profile is completely up to date. Think of it like a mix between resume, cover letter, and even references!
LinkedIn can connect you to employees of companies you’re applying to. If you can find the recruiter for a specific position or the Hiring Manager, consider sending them an In-mail via LinkedIn with a very brief cover letter to get their attention.
“Cover letters are secondary to your resume and LinkedIn profile! Keep everything in perspective and keep bringing your passion to the fun of finding your next gig!” says Sharon Tsao.
Want a hand with your job search? Partner with our staffing specialists at CSS!
Check out our current job opportunities on our job board or contact your local staffing specialist to help you in your job search!
Read More helpful & inspiring tips here.
Contemporary Staffing connects job seekers to hiring managers nationally in the following professions: Accounting & Finance, Call Center & Office, Human Resources, IT, Salesforce, and Sales & Marketing.