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Never Underestimate the Power of a Cover Letter: It is Your FOOT in the Door

Your cover letter isn’t merely a piece of paper you include with your resume. In fact, often a cover letter is even more important than the resume because it can determine whether or not your prospective employer continues on to read your resume!

When writing your cover letter, keep the old but true saying that “you never get a second chance to make a first impression” firmly in mind. Use the correct business format: title, name of the person to whose attention you are sending your resume, company name and address at top left, skip a couple of spaces and then insert the date.

Always begin your letter using the name of the person to whom it is addressed: “Dear Mr. Jones” instead of “Dear Employer.” Double space between paragraphs to make reading easier. And above all, be concise in stating why you are writing and what you want, such as, “I am applying for the position you recently advertised of acting comptroller for XYZ Widgets.”

Rather than just let your letter dwindle to an end, include a specific time and method you will use for following up on the position, for example, “I will call your office next Monday to see if we can schedule an interview.”

Keep it short, make it clear and always err on the side of more formality than less to ensure that your cover letter will get your resume read!

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