Write a Great Cover Letter for Use Online

By: Robin Ryan


Hiring managers agree-good cover letters are very influential. Often forgotten about when applying online, taking time to craft a good cover letter is a very good job hunting strategy to employ. What makes up a great letter is to have contact information-name, address, phone and home email at the top of the page, as your letterhead. Then utilize my cover letter strategies, which I call the Power Impact Technique, to write a strong opening paragraph that highlights the experience and accomplishments you bring to the job.

CEO Robert Waldt reiterates the importance of opening strongly. He said, "A poor opening paragraph is why many job hunters fail. It is often a vague general sentence. You need to immediately establish something unique about yourself. I like to see the particular reason-background or experience-that tells me why I should hire the person up front at the start of the letter."

Next, analyze the position and the skills needed to accomplish the job. "Applicants who do not address the qualifications or other information requested in the advertisement. That's a huge mistake,": warns Kelly Bachman, Finance Manager for a large agricultural company. "Address each specific qualification and state the experience and skills you bring to perform that task or function. The bottom line is you must show HOW you are qualified, and if you truly are not, save your time and effort and don't apply," she said.

You can jump ahead of the pack by demonstrating your superior communication skills. Write an effective cover letter to use, edit and reuse whenever you apply online. Target your cover letter appropriately to each job you apply for.

Write your Cover Letter offline: Begin with a strong opening such, as "Ten years of proven experience . " Next, highlight the talents and accomplishments you possess that are necessary to meet all the criteria for the job. You can use bullets, and I recommend that you do, to emphasize key points. Express your interest in the job and ask for an opportunity to interview. EDIT, SPELLCHECK, PROOFREAD. Eliminate any fancy fonts, italics or bold type as the online system typically won't accept them. Once you've finished creating the cover letter offline, file it on a directory on your hard drive so you can use it again and again.

Always use a Cover Letter: Many people are no longer sending cover letters with an electronic resume. This is a big mistake. Be sure that you customize your letter for the opening and include it as a part of your email, just in case the attachment does not open. When you are applying online you will need to follow the directions provided by the company you are applying to; typically they will give you the option to include a cover letter, along with your resume.

© Copyright 2003 Robin Ryan. All rights reserved.

Robin Ryan has appeared on the Dr. Phil Show, Oprah, NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw, CNN, CNBC and is considered America's top career coach. She is the best-selling author of: 60 Seconds & You're Hired!; Winning Resumés; Winning Cover Letters, and What to Do with the Rest of Your Life. She's the creator of the highly acclaimed audio training program Interview Advantage and The DreamMaker. Robin's passion is helping people find better jobs which she successfully does through her career counseling practice where she offers individual career coaching and resumé writing services. A popular national speaker, Robin has spoken to over a thousand audiences on improving their lives and obtaining greater success. To purchase her books and audio training programs click here: http://www.robinryan.com

To contact Robin email: RobinRyan@aol.com; or phone her at 425.226.0414.