We’re going to be blunt here: if you’re sending out the same resume and cover letter to every job to which you apply you are wasting your time.

To help you stand out in a very-crowded applicant field, it’s imperative that you craft a different cover letter for each and every job you’re after.

That’s correct. A different cover letter for each and every application.

Here are some tips to help you put together a well-crafted cover letter:

  1. Find out who the hiring manager is and direct the letter to her. Call the company and ask for her name, as well as the correct spelling and her title. You can also search on the company’s website for this information.
  2. Keep it short and to the point. Don’t ramble. Two to four short paragraphs should do the trick. Be sure to say why the job interests you and what qualities and skills you bring. In fact, if the job ad lists the qualifications of the successful applicant, craft a short table with two columns. In one, list the qualifications as stated in the ad. In the second, list how your skills, education and experience meet or exceed the requirements.
  3. Customize your letter for the position. That is, if you’re applying for a position as a project manager, emphasize your organization and team leadership skills. Then expand on one or two of your experiences that involved project management in one form — perhaps you oversaw the revamping of a previous employer’s database process, supervising one or two clerks in the process.
  4. Quantify, quantify, quantify. Show with facts and figures how you saved a former employer money, increased sales, improved efficiency, etc. Using the project management example above, when you talk about how you revamped the data process, mention that the end result was an increase in data input by X percent, and so on.
  5. Nip any concerns from the get go. If you’ve been out of work for a while, explain why in the cover letter. Were you laid off? Have you been raising children? Were you injured? Were you taking care of an ill parent? Did you decide to take a year to explore Europe? Did you start a business that wasn’t as successful as you had hoped? Say so briefly and then explain what you have been doing in that time to keep your skills up to date.

Write your well-crafted cover letter and bring it to StaffEx. We have many amazing positions with some of the best companies in Largo and the surrounding areas. Contact us today!

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