Your cover letter is your first opportunity to make a good impression. If you include the following six essential messages, you are much more likely to get your resume past the initial screening whether it’s a computer doing the job or a live person.
This post complements the Cover Letter Tips – The Ten Things You Want to Remember post. .
Make sure you say why you are sending a resume.
You would be amazed at how many people assume that the person opening the mail or email will know why you have sent your resume. Never assume that the job you are applying for is so important that everyone in the company knows about it. There may be several positions being advertised at the same time. So identify right up front why your cover letter and resume have landed on that person’s desk.
If a computer is performing the initial screening of applicants, including the keywords for the position and its job expectations in your explanation of why you are sending your resume will give you a solid chance of making it to a real person.
Share how you learned about the position.
Often, sharing how you learned about a job opening can get your foot in the door. You may have met a company representative at a job fair. You could let the company know that their internet posting introduced you to their company. You may have been interested in working for the company for a long time. Say so. If there’s a name to drop, weigh whether it would be a good idea to do so or not.