It’s no secret that the job application process has changed significantly in the past 10 years. Applicants used to send hard copies of their resumes and cover letters to hiring managers via email or fax, but most jobs today are posted online and applications are sent to hiring managers via email.
Applications still consist of cover letters, but the format of cover letters has changed a little bit in the online revolution. Cover letters used to be written in a standard letter format, and while this standard format is still widely accepted today and is by no means wrong, a lot of people are adapting their cover letters to complement the use of email in the application process.
One thing I always encourage people to do is to place their cover letter in the body of their email in addition to attaching a copy. I suggest this for 2 reasons. One, it speeds up the process for the recruiter (as they will only have to open up one attachment instead of two) and two, it helps eliminate the possibility (in the recruiter’s mind) that your email could be spam. Think about it – if you received an email with attachments, you would be more likely to open the attachments if there were some personalized text in the body. There will also be times where the recipient is unable to open your resume attachment, and they are much more likely to respond and request another copy if there is some text in the body of your email.
I do also suggest that you ALSO include a copy of your cover letter as an attachment just in case the recruiter would like to print it and show it to people.
In the grand scheme of things, these suggestions seem pretty minute, but with the competition as high as it is right now, why not pull out all the stops?
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