Many job search advice blogs tell job seekers why “cover letters are dead” and “no one has the time to read them”. In addition, job application forms do not always require cover letters when applying for work.
However, cover letters can be a very good idea to send even when no one required it. We explain 3 reasons why you should do it for your next job application.
3. Because no one else does it
The way to stand out to anyone is by trying something new to get someone’s attention. Merely doing what everyone else does shows you know how to “follow”. However, companies like leaders that try new things and think outside the box.
The very fact that you are willing to read a job description, write a cover letter expressing your interest, and send it with your application (even when not required) shows that you are not afraid to let someone know what you want. It also shows you are willing to make an extra effort most people do not while filling out dreaded online forms.
Once again, barely anyone does it. In a recent job posting to hire staff at Find My Profession, only 4 job seekers submitted cover letters out of 100+ submissions (1 of the 4 was hired). So, you will stand out for doing it, mostly for the better.
2. It shows off your communication skills
Unless you are making the mistake of recycling your cover letters, writing a cover letter when not required shows that you are the type of person to initiate a conversation when you see something you like.
You are communicating through a cover letter that this job interests you so much so you will take the time and write about it. Job seekers who do such a thing are showing that they know how to communicate directly when they want something, without passive actions.
Important: If your cover letter displays that you communicate poorly, do not proofread, or fail to get to the point, the cover letter works against you. Anyone who writes a cover letter should always edit and proofread it before sending. Errors in your cover letter hurt your chances of getting job interviews.
1. It shows passion and personality
It is true that there are job candidates who have landed work mainly because of the way they write. Resumes with a track record of experience show your success. But a hiring manager will get a better idea of your personality if you possess strong writing skills for conveying your passion.
As the hiring manager views your resume, they may be thinking, “This looks impressive”. A cover letter alongside it with your “personality in writing” will explain to the hiring manager, “I see why they were able to achieve such impressive results. Look at the way he/she communicates”.
The cover letter will ultimately be a topic of discussion in your job interview if written so well that it was the main reason you were interviewed, to begin with. Even though we live in a digital age of texting, blogging, and speech-to-text, things like writing skills that motivate others to succeed have not gone out of style.