Resume writing and career advice
job search tips/workplace trends
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Think cover letters are passe when applying for a position? Think again, a new OfficeTeam survey suggests. More than nine in 10 (91 percent) executives polled said cover letters are valuable when evaluating job candidates. In addition, nearly eight in 10 (79 percent)respondentsindicated it's common to receive cover letters even when applicants submit resumes electronically. The results mirror those from a similar survey conducted in 2008.
The survey was developed by OfficeTeam, a leading staffing service specializing in the placement of highly skilled administrative professionals. It was conducted by an independent research firm and is based on telephone interviews with more than 1,000 senior managers at companies with 20 or more employees.
Managers were asked, "When evaluating prospective job candidates, how valuable is the cover letter that accompanies the resume?" Their responses:
Very valuable 21%
Somewhat valuable 70%
Not valuable at all 9%
Managers also were asked, "When you receive a resume electronically from a job candidate, how common is it for that resume to be accompanied by a letter of introduction or cover letter?" Their responses:
Very common 21%
Somewhat common 58%
Not common at all1 6%
Never receive resumes electronically 5% 100%
"Although the job application process has increasingly moved online, the importance of a cover letter shouldn't be underestimated," said Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam. "It often is the first opportunity to make a positive impression on hiring managers. It's also a chance to provide context for your resume, expand on key accomplishments and explain reasons for employment gaps or career changes."
Added Hosking, "Professionals can stand out from the crowd by using the cover letter to demonstrate their knowledge of the company and explain why they are the best fit for the role."
OfficeTeam offers five tips for job seekers when writing and submitting cover letters:
Not everyone is skilled at writing resumes and cover letters. If you need assistance, these resources can help:
Amazing Cover Letters
One Click Cover Letters
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About Matt Krumrie
In addition to writing resumes, Krumrie has published over 2,000 career and job search articles for CollegeRecruiter,