When mailing a résumé, always include a cover letter. It provides an opportunity to sell oneself, and encourages the prospective employer to read the résumé. Employers do not like “form” cover letters, so always target the specific job for which you are applying. Ideally, the cover letter should be written on the same color and quality stationery as the résumé. Elements of a Cover Letter
Greeting: Address by name and title, someone in authority who could hire you. Do not write “Dear Sir or Madam,” or “To Whom it May Concern,” unless all efforts to locate a name have been exhausted.
Introduction: In the initial paragraph, state the reason for the letter, the specific position or type of work for which you are applying, and indicate from which resource (i.e., Career Center, newspaper ad, friend, and so on) you learned about this opening. If referred by a professional in a related business, indicate that person’s name if you have been given permission to do so.
Body: This should state why you are interested in the position and is an excellent opportunity to sell your skills and abilities. If possible, avoid repeating what you have already stated in your attached résumé. You should summarize and elaborate on any relevant experiences or achievements. Try to catch the employer’s attention by conveying your interest and enthusiasm for this line of work.
Closing: In this paragraph, state your desire for a personal interview, and close your letter with an assertive statement or question which will encourage a positive response.
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