Recruiting expert Steph Rogers agrees with the assertion that cover letters are dead, as fewer companies rely on these documents to vet candidates. However, she argues that a well-written piece of correspondence can tip the scales in your favor. The key, she says, is to recognize that your written proposal to an employer is much like a love letter.
The Point of Cover Letters
Recruiters scan many resumes per day looking for the right candidate, so why does writing a cover letter mean anything? That's because they allow you to focus on the company and less on you, which is the basic premise of a love letter.
Cover letters let the employer know why you are the best candidate for the job, why you're interested in the position and what you bring to the company. If you talk about yourself in the entire letter, recruiters probably won't want to read it. This is also true when you write a letter declaring your love for someone, as the other person doesn't want the letter to be all about you.
That doesn't mean you should write cover letters with the intent of romantically loving a company, position or boss. It simply indicates that when you take the approach of writing a love note, you discover that telling an employer why you're perfect for the job may happen more easily and naturally.
Compared to Love Notes
In a love note, you state is why you're interested in the other person. Similarly, pick out one to three main attributes of the position that interest you, and state them in your letter. Picking these qualities shows you thoroughly read and understood the job description.
Secondly, a love letter allows you to describe why the person is special. Similarly, say what makes the firm stand out among all of the others in your mind. Do you love the company culture, the growth pattern, your chances for professional development or the company's product lines? Perhaps you noticed this employer's brand as a kid and it inspired you to change your life for the better.
Next, outline why you are the best match for the person, or in this case, the position. Choose three of your top-level skills, and state why they mesh well with the position. Focus on soft skills, hard skills, experiences or a mixture of all three. You could even mention how you would solve a company's specific problem by outlining how your qualifications take your chosen employer to the next level.
Lastly, state what you contribute to the relationship with your love interest (the company). Explain how you love partaking in day-to-day duties, adding value to your company and bringing your passion for the job every day.
Cover letters allow you to formally declare your love or admiration for a company. If you see your correspondence this way, you just might land a few more interviews or even your dream job.
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