The following resource is required for this Career Starters assignment: Cover Letters and Professional Documents Guide (Links to an external site.).
Your cover letter should follow the instructions and the example on pages 1–2 of the Cover Letters and Professional Documents Guide.pdf.
The cover letter must do the following.
Submit these two Microsoft Word documents by the Sunday deadline.
Cover Letters & Beyond
Develops a connection between you and the employer and the position.
Tells the employer why they should hire YOU specifically, and explains what makes you uniquely qualified to fulfill their needs.
Gives an opportunity to convey your unique communication style and offers a potential employer a first glimpse of your personality.
Acts as a very useful writing sample for employers to determine your ability to write clearly and professionally. (This is why it is so important to proofread!)
How To Write A Professional Document
Types of Professional Documents:
THANK YOU NOTES
LINKEDIN CONNECTION REQUESTS
A Well-written Document:
NEEDS OF THE
Powerful, professional documents convey your value, align your experience and abilities to the needs of the company, and influence the reader. Most importantly, they answer this question for the hiring manager:
How can you impact my organization?How can you impact my organization? We can answer this important question in our professional documents by looking at how our individual
strengths and skills connect with or match with the needs of the employer.
Read the job description thoroughly and determine how you meet the qualifications.
Research the organization and include references to their mission, needs, or vision.
Identify key requirements of the organization and connect them to your experience.
Reiterate your interest and how to contact you . Thank the employer for their time and consideration and indicate you will look forward to hearing from them.
Make a connection for the employer; show how your experiences directly relate to the organization and position. Tell a story. Do not repeat what is in your résumé. Instead, contextualize it as it relates to this new job or organization. Include achievement stories. Provide concrete examples of your abilities, skills and accomplishments as evidence of how your qualifications match the job, and highlight them with bullets.
How to Structure a Cover Letter or E-Note
Before you begin writing…
Your cover letter should follow a business letter format, and the top section should match the contact information section from the top of your résumé. It should also utilize the same font and margin sizes.
An e-note is similar to a cover letter, but in an email format. It should be a bit shorter and more concise than the cover letter, but follows this same general structure.
Job Responsibility/Duty My Skills & Experience
Paragraph 1: Introduction
Paragraphs 2-3: Qualifications
Paragraph 4: Closing
Open your cover letter with a strong, compelling sentence that draws your reader in immediately. Ensure the wording is creative and catches an employer’s attention quickly. Include which position you are applying for, where you found the job posting, and why you would be a good fit.
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Don’t forget to proofread your documents! It is a good idea to have several different people review them to help catch typos, misspellings and grammatical errors. Do not rely solely on yourself for this; it is too easy to miss something when reviewing your own writing.
LinkedIn Connection Request
A LinkedIn connection request is another opportunity to make an impact – don't waste it! When you customize a connection, you only have 300 characters so you need to be brief.
Thank You Note
A thank you note shows the interviewer a certain level of professionalism and proper etiquette. It is another opportunity to make the case as to why they should hire YOU, and it usually arrives at the time when hiring decisions are made.
The email should be sent within 24 hours after the interview. A handwritten note can also be sent through the postal mail to make a bigger impression; however, this should not replace the email.
It demonstrates a true passion and desire for the role, and is a great way for you to make the case as to How You Can Impact their Organization!
The layout follows that of a cover letter with an intro, body, and exit. Point out something specific so it reminds the interviewer of the conversation you had, and shows you were engaged and listening during the interview.
This connection request was sent after an interview, and you can see that Joe Jobseeker sent Ms. Craig a request to connect on LinkedIn. In this request he not only reiterated his excitement for the role, but was able to further emphasize why he would make a good fit and help him impact their organization.
This type of customized request helps you stand out from all the other standardized LinkedIn requests that Ms. Craig might get.
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