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What Color Is Your Parachute?

What Color Is Your Parachute? 2017: A Practical Manual for Job-Hunters and Career-Changers
by Richard Nelson Bolles
The best-selling job-hunting book in the world. One of the reasons it's still so popular is that author Richard Bolles faithfully revises the English-language edition, often dramatically, each year.
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Cover Letters

JobSkills.info is a site dedicated to articles and features on careers, job searching, recruitment, selection and human resource development. JobSkills.info is part of the HRM Guide Network.

Job Application Cover Letters And Notes

Handwritten Notes
Personalized letters are an effective way of getting noticed when looking for work in a world dominated by electronic communications.

Cover Letters: Your First Chance to Impress
Hiring managers routinely receive responses from hundreds, perhaps thousands, of applicants for any given job. To avoid having your resume sink in this sea of paper, itís imperative to write a cover letter that stands out from the crowd and makes a good first impression.

Nuts and Bolts of Effective Cover Letters
As a job seeker, you shouldn't overlook the importance of a cover letter. If written strategically, a cover letter increases your chances for consideration, and provides an opportunity to highlight your individuality.

A cover letter is much more than just a letter stating, "I read the job announcement in Sunday's classified, please accept this letter as an application of interest". It is a statement that tells the reader what they can expect from you if hired.

The Not-So-Effective Cover Letter
Here's a newsflash: Cover letters work, plain and simple. This is why I'm intrigued by the fact that a) jobseekers rarely submit them and b) hiring managers seldom read them. As a result, I started asking questions. Specifically, "What's your problem with cover letters?" Here's what I found out.

Jobseekers claim all the pertinent information is included in the resume. Translation: "I don't know how to write an effective cover letter so I just scrap it." Hiring managers say cover letters serve no purpose. Translation: "Jobseekers don't know how to write an effective cover letter so I'd just as soon not be bothered."

When Cover Letters Get Personal
It's perfectly acceptable to add pizzazz to cover letters in an effort to engage the reader in your story. Taking a business approach while adding a personal touch to the cover letter will certainly make you stand out from other candidates. But many are skeptical about adding a personal story to the cover letter because rumor has it that cover letters should be completely business-oriented. That isn't true. There are occasions when it is appropriate to deviate from what others expect to read, and of course, there are times when you should remain with the "tried and true" method.

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