There is constant debate about the value of cover letters due to the fact that many companies use sophisticated screening software, online applications and the like, making the cover letter useless in today’s job search. However, cover letters, whether email or hard copy, are still a necessity for today’s job seeker. Here are the reasons why:
- Your resume gets reviewed. A well written cover letter encourages further reading of your resume. It is like a sampling of what is to come. If the cover letter is enticing, the reader will be anxious to get to the main course, the resume! This is particularly important if you are less than qualified for the job you are applying for.
- A great marketing opportunity. Think about it. Assuming your resume is chalked full of job related accomplishments; the cover letter gives you yet another opportunity to ‘toot your horn’. Remember, you are always in selling mode in the job search. The cover letter provides one more opportunity for you to sell yourself.
- Prove you can satisfy employer’s needs. If you have done your research you know what the company does and what problems they face. Now use the cover letter to show case your knowledge of the above and provide examples of how you can solve their issues.
- Show off your writing skills. What is one of the skills most sought after by employers? Communication skills (written, verbal and listening). Writing a compelling cover letter requires excellent writing skills. Furthermore, the cover letter offers the employer a sample of your ability to write concisely. This is particularly important for new college grads entering the job market who may lack other job skills. If your cover letter is well written, your resume will be reviewed.
Make the cover letter are part of your job search marketing strategy. Remember, the more times you can get in front of an employer the more opportunity you have to create a favorable, lasting impression. The cover letter provides you an additional opportunity to stand out among the crowd, so don’t ignore it. Follow me on Twitter.