Set yourself apart from your competition by creating appropriate and professional letters targeted toward each position you’re seeking. A concise, tailored cover letter provides a brief overview of why you’re writing and why you should be hired (the value you’ll add in the position and to the organization). While oftentimes a time consuming task, a cover letter can have a positive impact to your candidacy. Cover letters use a professional business format typically include 3-4 paragraphs.
Paragraph One: Why Am I Writing?
Capture the reader’s attention immediately and drop the name/contact of the individual that encouraged you to apply. List the name of the position and job number if instructed.
Paragraph Two: Who Am I and Why Should You Hire Me?
Tell the reader how you would add value to this position and the organization. Demonstrate your abilities through 1-2 relevant experiences.
Paragraph Three: My Next Step?
Sincerely discuss your interest in the position and what you plan to do to follow up.
Thank You Letters
Thank you letters are valuable during the interview process and should not be neglected. A thank you letter is an opportunity to further reinforce your interest in and fit for the position you’re seeking. Thank you letters can be sent in a variety of formats—hand-written, emailed or typed and mailed—depending on the situation and the contact you’ve already had with the employer representative.
Possible inclusions in your letter:
- Reiterate your interest in the position, mentioning a specific aspect discussed during the interview
- Thank the interviewer for their time and opportunity to interview, as well as their consideration of you as a candidate
- Mention any follow up you have completed or will complete
- Demonstrate a warm, sincere tone throughout your letter
Technology allows job seekers to easily connect with employers. A prospective employer’s impression of you can change (for better or worse) with each communication. Correspondence with employers through email and social media can impact your candidacy. Apply these tips when communicating with a potential employer:
- Always respond – even if uninterested in the position/organization
- Tailor your correspondence
- Be professional in use of tone and language in all correspondence
- Proofread, proofread, proofread
- Make the subject line of your emails count. Be descriptive.
- Do not use all caps or all lowercase in message