I’ve been thinking a lot about cover letters since the post a few days ago titled Nobody Reads Cover Letters. Well, except… There were four excellent comments, and the messages I saw from the comments and from Twitter about that post tells me one thing:
Even if some people don’t read cover letters, still send a cover letter. Always.
BUT, make sure your cover letter is “targeted” (the word I normally use is “customized”) – it cannot be a generic cover letter.
AND, make sure your cover letter doesn’t have mistakes, as it is used as a screening tool (“she didn’t take time to proof read her cover letter, so she must not have attention to detail, which is critical in this role.”).
This makes me think about other tools and tactics. Some people say the resume is going the way of the dodo bird… but others (and their internal HR systems) completely rely on the resume. You can’t neglect the tools and tactics that *might* be key in getting you to that next step.
It’s nice to think there are short cuts, but in reality there are certain requirements – be careful to understand what the current fads are saying, and make sure YOU have YOUR bases covered.