4 Tips To Making Your Cover Letter Stand Out

By Kelly Gregorio

The fact that you are job-less is perplexing. You have a promising resume, solid recommendations and a real drive to get the job, any job, done. You're enthusiastic, committed and just need a chance to prove yourself. So why hasn't anyone caught on to your stellar employment potential? Chances are, because you're letting them pass you by.

Standard cover letters and stale insight will not give you an edge, and will certainly not help land you an interview. If you want to get noticed then you're going to have to stand out. When it comes to the job-hunt your cover letter is your first (and sometimes only) impression, read on to discover 4 tips that will guarantee you a second look.

Read and Respond

One common mistake people make when applying to a job is that they don't appreciate the real value of the posting. Within a job posting are all of the hints and tips you could ever need to land yourself an interview.

Your goal is to get whoever reads your cover letter to say, "Yes, this is exactly the type of person we need on our team." The way to make this happen is to zero in on the job requirements and qualification sections.

They will list what they need; i.e. Someone who possesses excellent customer service skills. And, within your cover letter you will craft writing that responds directly to their needs; i.e. Within my 5 years of management experience, exceptional and organic customer service remains my top priority. Design a cover letter that proves you are exactly the hire they've been looking for; the paved path on how to get there is yours for the taking.

Do Your Research

Every company has a mission and set of ideals that are committed to following.and every company lists these insights on their website generally in a section titled "About Us", or "Our Story" and so on. If you want your cover letter to get noticed then you need to display your go-getter attitude by conducting some company research and showing off your smarts.

Show your understanding of the company and it's cause. I admire X company for your commitment to do Y and Z. Company culture is more than just a buzzword, it's a real thing that you need to fit into in order to be the right hire. If you want the job then you've got to prove that you're a comfortable fit, and by aligning with a company's mission statement, you're doing just that.

Keep in mind that you can also show off your aptitude by being current and on trend. Consider Googling a company for any recent accolade or perhaps check to see if they have a website tab for "Press." I'm eager to be apart of a company that is forward thinking, and your presence on Forbes 500/5000 list for Fastest Growing Businesses confirms just that.

Add An Idea or Two

At this point in your cover letter you've peaked a hiring manager's interest. You've proven that you're educated and interested.now its time to push them over the edge. Include in your cover letter (just a sentence or two) as to how you would dive-into work, should the job become yours.

For example, say you're shooting for a job in customer service management. Perhaps you might take the initiative to read customer complaints online. In your letter you might explain ways in which you would remedy the current customer problems the company is dealing with.

Keep in mind that your ideal tactic will need to be flexible pertaining to the job at hand. If you're going for a chef position you might include a recipe. If you're going for a blogging position, you might include some article ideas and topic suggestions.

The goal is to show that you're proactive and eager to get to work. How many other candidates do you think will take this extra, added step? I can tell you not everyone will, so make sure you're apart of the crowd that shows real initiative.

The Two Most Important Lines

The first most important line of your cover letter just happens to be the first line of your letter. Typically your first line would look something like this: I am excited to be applying for the open position as a Manager.

OK, that looks just fine; however what if it looked like this: I am excited to be applying for your open management position and the chance to potentially join X Company's team.

The point? Be personal. Change some words like "the" to "your," mention the company's name, subtlety tug at their heartstrings.

The second line and final thing you need to tend to is the email's subject line. If a job ad posts as Corporate Manager, how many email subject lines do you think are going to include that phrase -making you one of a million-? Instead, make an effort to stand out and be relevant, something like Customer Service-Oriented Manager catches the eye.

In short, make an effort. Spending an additional forty minutes on a cover letter is worth it if it lands you an interview. Once you get face-to-face with someone you become a person, not just a plain white sheet of resume paper.

Take the extra time, make the extra effort and prove to the hiring manager that you deserve an interview.and from beginning to end, prepare to keep paying it forward for the job that you want.

You want it? Earn it. It's as simple as that.

What are the other ways in which you can make a cover letter sing?



Reprinted by permission from CareerCast.com, Adicio Inc. All rights reserved. To see other articles about job hunting and career management, please visit http://www.CareerCast.com.




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