Job seekers too often fill their resume and cover letter with their own accomplishments, rarely giving thought to how those credentials add value to the company for which they are applying. Put yourself in a potential employer's position to decide how to word your resume in a way that places the employer's needs first.
The first method of conveying your work value for employers is to create a value statement for your cover letter. Explain how you can help the organization increase profits, streamline operations, cut costs, develop teams and more with your specific experience and skill set. Be sure to make this section evident in your cover letter by labeling it clearly and centering it on the page. As this is the first thing that hiring managers see when they pick up your resume, it creates a positive impression before your resume is even read.
To demonstrate your interest in your potential employer's needs, be sure to research the organization thoroughly. Explaining how you can help the company achieve its stated goals and fulfill its organizational values is a great way to accomplish this in your cover letter. Explore the company's website, social media pages and relevant news stories to get a clear idea of its core objectives. Be careful to avoid old or outdated information.
Another method is to streamline your resume with only the most relevant details. You may be proud of experience that is 10 to 15 years old, but it adds little value to the employer. Instead, fill your resume and cover letter with updated experience relevant to the position to which you are applying. Also consider replacing specific technical skills, such as the ability to use Microsoft Word, with broader skills that make you a better team member, such as strong written and verbal communication skills. Examples and figures from previous jobs may help add credibility to these claims.
However, skills are not the only value you have to offer employers. According to Money by U.S. News & World Report, skills and experience in your cover letter and resume are only the first part of a hiring manager's list of requirements. Character traits and attitudes are just as important for a positive work environment, and the top five qualities employers want in their employees are empathy, interpersonal skills, mentoring ability, self-direction and adaptability. You may hint towards these traits in your cover letter, but they are chiefly assessed during the interview process.
Expressing your personal value for employers may mean the difference between landing your dream job and continuing your search. As you work on your cover letter, try to read everything from an employer's point of view to create an eye-catching resume that makes companies want to hire you.
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