I recently read an article on a Job Board that stated that Cover Letters are worthless and a waste of time for recruiters and search committees. The article stated that it was redundant and that most employers are not even reading them.
That may be the case for mid-management and lesser level positions, though I doubt it, but in the case of Executive positions I would be inclined to declare that Cover Letters are vital to promoting oneself as a candidate for a specific opportunity.
It is important to use Cover Letters as an initial promotion and enticement piece so that the potential employer will open up the resume attachment. In today’s digital world, it is not important any longer to concern oneself about whether a Cover Letter and resume are on parchment or bond paper – today we have to entice them to open the attachment first because if that attachment is never seen, the opportuntiy for you to impresss is history . It is essential for the Cover Letter to be relevant and specific to the position in question and be a useful tool to entice the prospective employer regarding your capabilities for the available vacancy.
The Cover Letter is a remarkable opportunity for the candidate to show his/her passion for the job while also making it clear to the reader that you have writing skills that as a candidate is an added benefit if selected.
Resumes can certainly get you the interview but the Cover Letter is the tool that will open the door for initial consideration for that interview. A well written Cover Letter can get the attention of a potential employer who can be very tired of reading the same old, same old and with the right twist and phrase it can certainly get you an audience with a decision-maker.
Find a unique phrase or elevator speech that is concise while also being of interest to the reader. Give a backgrounder of yourself while also providing specific career results that would be appropriate for this position. Increases in revenue, positive membership retention or legislative/regulatory successes are certainly appropriate eye-openers that can assist in getting you to the next phase of candidate selection.
Uniqueness and illustrations of passion for the job and the profession in a well written and positioned Cover Letter can certainly make the bored reader of numerous resumes take a second look at your candidacy. A little creativeness goes a long way to assist; so get those adjectives and superlatives ready for a new tour that ultimately can take you to that new sought-after position.