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Seattle, WA 98116
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(206) 201-2181

Tandem Powered offers a full suite of Professional Resume Writing, Career Development, and HR / Business Consulting services.

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Tandem Powered's blog is dedicated to empowering readers by highlighting best practices in the arena of resume writing, career development, and organizational effectiveness, as well as by providing readers with an insider's view of the corporate hiring process.

The Importance of a Cover Letter

Kent Nolen

I just checked in with a recent client, Jane, who – at the start of our project – was as anti-cover-letter as anti-cover-letter gets. She was one of the many people out there who believe that a cover letter is a "throw away" item – something that needs to be done but not very mindfully. Early on, I explained to her (as I often do when clients ask) the importance of a cover letter.

First off, always submit a cover letter with your resume unless a company/organization specifically asks for only a resume. An ideal cover letter can take many forms to be sure, but it's main goal should usually be to motivate the reader to take a close look at your resume. Moreover, I typically like to see a cover letter that gives the reader a bit more information – some  context that will help them to make further sense of the resume. Oftentimes, a cover letter becomes more important once the list of job candidates has been whittled down. That's when the "extras" that a cover letter provides can make all of the difference.

Jane let me know that she believes it was ultimately her cover letter that got her a job. Her new employer told her that it expressed a level of interest and sincerity that set her apart from other applicants. Cover letters are still a big part of the job-search routine. Use that fact to your advantage.