When you are applying for a particular job, one of the first things that a prospective employer will see is your cover letter. It’s basically an introduction for your resume so that individuals will want to take a closer look into you and what you have to potentially offer their company.
Since first impressions are extremely important, you want to make sure that you put your best foot (or rather, keystrokes) forward when you’re putting your cover letter together. Therefore, we wanted to provide you with a list of five common cover letter mistakes that many people make in hopes that you will be able to create one that will make employers want to call you in for an interview.
Being too informal
Sometimes people think that if they come with a witty approach that it will work in their favor. Remember that your cover letter and resume are to get individuals to see your skills. Your personality is something that you should reserve more for the interview and so, you need to remain as formal (“Dear Mr.” or “Dear Ms.”, etc.) as possible.
Not paying attention to the length
One of the biggest mistakes that people tend to make is crafting a letter that is either too short or way too long. Customarily, a cover letter should be two (five-sentence) paragraphs if you’re going to send it via email and 4-5 paragraphs (max) if it’s going to be delivered by fax or snail mail.
Rewording the resume
If your cover letter is only going to repeat what is already listed in your resume, then there’s not too much of a point in writing one. Remember that the cover letter is what you’re using to make employers want to look at your resume, so work to make it addresses the particular job that you’re applying for and/or to address anything within the resume that may seem unclear.
Failing to remove typos
No matter what kind of position that you’re applying for, if you’re going to send an online resume or deliver it by mail, your employer is going to want to feel that you are a good communicator, both in verbal and written form. It’s going to be pretty hard for them to believe that if your cover letter is full of grammatical errors and typos. That’s why it’s imperative that you read your cover letter several times to check for any editing that it needs before you send it out.
Leaving out contact information
Although cover letters and resumes may be sent together, that doesn’t always mean that they won’t end up separated under a pile of other people’s employment history. This is why it’s a good idea to make sure that you have your name, email and phone number even on your cover letter. For safe measure, it’s also a good idea to close out your letter with letting the company know that you’ll follow up with a phone call or email in about a week just to make sure that your information was received. The more thorough you are in the applying process, the better chance you’ll have of landing an interview.