Let’s tackle the big question … do cover letters still matter?
This topic has been a subject of great debate among hiring, recruitment, and career industry professionals for the last decade.
- A 2017 job seeker nation study by Jobvite, only 26% of recruiters consider cover letters important when hiring a candidate.
- A separate study reported that 56% of employers preferred that candidates include a cover letter with their application.
- A 2015 CareerBuilder survey found 49% of employers pay more attention to applicants who include a cover letter with their resume.
The main takeaway …
I am not suggesting that you must have a cover letter because I make a nice living writing cover letters.
Most recruiters may not pay attention to your cover letter, but many hiring decision-makers do. The reality is that you have no way of knowing whether or not your letter is going to be seen by a person who does or does not read cover letters. Therefore, it is in your best interest to send a cover letter every time unless you are applying for a position that specifically asks you not to send one.
A well-written cover letter serves to introduce your resume to the reader and share why you are the #1 solution to their problems.
I review hundreds of cover letters and the most common mistakes people make are writing letters that lack focus, are too long, and fail to highlight the relevant skills, value, and other qualifications you bring to the table.
A strong cover letter must do 3 things:
- Make a connection with the reader.
- Address the employer’s specific needs and offer solutions to their problems.
- Move the reader to take action … calling you for an interview!
How do we achieve this:
Scientech Resumes take a practical, no-nonsense approach to writing powerful correspondence job letters, including cover letters, cold inquiry letters, and post-interview thank you letters that read for both applicant tracking systems (ATS) and human readers.
- Communicate who you are and why you are writing and your interest in the role.
- Highlight relevant education, experience, and skills that position you as a prime candidate.
- Capture attention by including specific examples of your key achievements and contributions.
- Share information about special circumstances (i.e. career change, relocation, military transition, return to work, etc.)
- Ask for the interview.