Cover Letters Provide Opportunity to Show How Well You Communicate


Continuing our series excerpted from our new, free white paper, Cover Letter Reboot: A Crowdsourced Update of Traditional Cover-letter Advice for Today’s Job Search, which you can download here. If you prefer not to download, you can read the contents here. WhitePaperScreenshot.jpg In this part of the series, we asked hiring decision-makers what they look for in a cover letter. Here are responses from two decision-makers: A cover letter is an insight into how the job-seeker communicates.
  • Does the job-seeker understand what I am looking for?
  • Does the job-seeker make a clear logical connection between the job-seeker’s experience and the job requirements?
If a job-seeker is not qualified for the position, the cover letter doesn’t make much difference. But among qualified job-seekers, a good cover letter tells me more about an individual than a resume alone.

— Jenson Crawford, director of engineering, Fetch Technologies, El Segundo, CA

I like a simple three-paragraph letter:

  • First paragraph is who you are and what position you are applying for.
  • Second paragraph gives me a sense of why you are qualified for the opportunity
  • Third paragraph says you will be following up with me.

— David Shelton, vice president for operations for Medical Advocacy Services for Healthcare (The MASH Program), Fort Worth, TX See all the parts of the white paper/Cover Letter Reboot package: Cover Letter Wish List: Hiring Decision-Makers Reveal What They Want to See in Cover Letters, Hiring Decision-Makers Cite Top Cover-Letter Mistakes that Disqualify Job-Seekers, and Cover Letters That Wowed: Hiring Decision-Makers Describe Winning Cover Letters.