Tailoring Your Skills to Targeted Job Is Most Important Cover-Letter Aspect, Survey Says


In the 2010 Orange County Resume Survey*, 21 percent of respondents said “tailored skills from the job description” were the most important elements of cover letters. Seventeen percent cited clarity (well-written, formatted, specifying job description applying to) as the most important cover letter aspect. For 13 percent, Details from the resume (additional accomplishments, explanation of gaps, etc.) were most important. Communicating the applicant’s value (beyond the basics) and why the employer should hire the candidate earned support from 12 percent of respondents, as did spelling and grammar. Eleven percent look for personal vision and uniqueness, while 8 percent value brevity, and 1 percent want to see mention of “top employers.” For 6 percent, no aspect was most important because those respondents don’t care about cover letters or don’t read them.

*The 2010 Orange County Resume Survey by The Center for Career and Life Development, Saddleback College, Mission Viejo, CA, Eric Hilden, Career Placement Officer, was distributed by email to 2,000+ employer contacts in Orange County and shared online employer contacts in Orange County and shared online via social-networking sites including Linkedin.com and Twitter.