Writing a Resume Cover Letter That Shines

By Jimmy Sweeney Author of the brand new, "Amazing Cover Letter Creator."

How to Put Your Resume Cover Letter to Work for You

A resume cover letter is so important because in a tough job market, there are always multiple applicants, and that truth is compounded when you are looking for a really good job. Have you ever been frustrated when you have applied for something that you know matches your skills, yet you never even got a phone call from the potential employer? Have you been surprised to find that the person they did hire appears to be less suited to the job than you are? Well, the jarring truth may be that the person who they hired got into that interview simply because they had a better resume cover letter.

You ought to read that last sentence again, because this is really important. Consider the role of interviewing, to see how this works. If you get hundreds of resumes in for a single position, the time it takes to sift through those to develop a shortlist of applicants can be enormous. But people are people, and any interviewer will naturally look for a way to shortcut that process so as to sort the wheat from the chaff so to speak. The first step in that process is to read through the cover letters and to set aside only those that have ignited some sort of spark. In other words, your cover letter is the only real chance you have to make enough of an impression to get onto that shortlist.

In that way, your resume cover letter should simply be considered a form of conversation opener. What would you say to someone that you wanted to impress, if you could meet him or her face to face? Be real about this: nobody wants to hear your resume. That document, though important, is only there to reinforce what you have said in your initial communication. Moreover, it is important to note that although you may not have the specific skills listed in a set of job requirements, you may nevertheless be a tantalizing prospect for an employer because of your lack of personality and ability to communicate.

The Resume Cover Letterís Power Revealed

Can you see now how powerful a strong resume cover letter can be? Put yourself in an interviewer's shoes and you would probably act the same way that they do: you would only set aside the resumes fronted by cover letters that describe a person you would like to meet and take the time to speak to. There really isn't a way around this because in the final analysis, though skills are desirable, they are often not completely necessary.

Though hiring managers would like to put someone that has the sort of experience that ensures that they can do the job right away. But in some cases, they cannot find someone with that set of skills. Alternately, those skills may be so common and basic that the decision who to hire will be made on some other basis altogether. After all, donít forget that it is always possible to train someone should a new recruit not have the full range of required skills. But it is considerably more difficult to find truly interesting people to work with. Your cover letter should be written to get the word across that you are precisely the sort of person that is worth getting to know better.

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