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Make your cover letter count

Debbie Teakle
Jul 9
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You’d be amazed at how few people submit their resumes without a cover letter. Or if a cover letter is provided, it is badly written with no consideration for the recipient, the role being applied for or the company advertising that role. Cover letters give you the chance to explain why you are right for the job. So why waste this opportunity?

A cover letter serves as an introduction to your resume. You can highlight certain skills and experience that are relevant to the particular role you are applying for. For example, if the role requires React experience and all your work has been with Angular, you can emphasise some React side projects you have worked on and explain why you want to make the transition.

A cover letter can also share why you like the company and its mission, revealing something about your personality. It can demonstrate that you care enough about the role to do your research on the company and indicate that you are a good values fit. If the company is an education startup, for example, you might want to explain why a role in the education industry appeals to you and what you like about startups.

Tech companies often want people who are mindful of user experience. Consider your cover letter the first step to proving that you care about your end user!

  • Use the recipient’s real name where possible and avoid addressing them as ‘Sir’ or ‘Madam’ - a simple ‘Hi there’ would do instead.
  • If you’re uploading the cover letter, save it as a PDF and name the file so that it’s easily found in a downloads folder eg. joe_lee_cover_letter.pdf
  • If you’re emailing your resume, consider the email body text to be your cover letter - it’ll be one less file to download, and is immediately seen in the inbox
  • Follow the instructions of the job ad (some ads specify file type, information to include etc.)
  • Make it brief - just like an email it should get straight to the point. It should be just enough to entice the reader to look at your resume in a positive light.

Now I know what you are thinking - it takes time to write a good cover letter! Yes it does! It requires research, thought and effort. But if most people aren’t bothering to do this, then consider mastering the art of the cover letter as your secret weapon in your job search.

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