Change is Coming!

We all know change is inevitable, right? Well, after much thought and consideration, and nearly 30 years of improving resumes for people across the globe, Peterson’s has decided to wind down our interests in ResumeEdge. While the service will be temporarily unavailable to new users, there’s a new strategy in the works, and we hope to introduce a new version shortly – please check back soon for more information.

If you just signed up for ResumeEdge, don’t worry, we’ve got your back and will continue to provide you with our services through March 31st. We know that many of you have come to rely on ResumeEdge, and we want to thank you all for your trust in our product, and encourage you to come back for more information on how to access the new product.

Thank you again, and we’ll see you soon!

Why it’s important to target each resume and cover letter

AUTHOR: Darlene Zambruski
CATEGORY: ,
POSTED: May 1, 2012 at 10:34 am

On average, I see about 20 resumes a day from candidates who want to work for ResumeEdge. As the Managing Editor and hiring manager, I’m tasked with finding the best writers.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve opened a cover letter that stated “Dear Sir”. Considering that the candidate didn’t bother to check out our site or my name, that didn’t bode well.

I’ve had others who used the correct salutation, but after “Dear Darlene” the letter then stated the following:

“I read your ad about the ESL opening, and I want to assure you that as a teacher, I have the credentials and experience you need.”

Please Don’t Apply for This Job Unless You’re Qualified (even remotely)

Given that I hire writers to write resumes, and not teachers to teach English as a second language, I moved on to the next candidate. After all, if this individual didn’t read the cover letter before submitting, or didn’t care enough to personalize the cover letter’s contents to the position I had open, then this person wouldn’t be a good fit in our organization.

And that brings me to a hard truth all job seekers should understand. You have only one chance to wow a hiring manager.

How to Wow a Hiring Manager

1. Use the individual’s name in the cover letter. No ‘Dear Sir’, ‘Dear Sir or Madam’, or ‘To Whom It May Concern’. Find the person’s name. Use it. You’ll be glad you did.

2. Tailor the cover letter to the job being sought. Trust me, if the hiring manager is looking for someone to make widgets and you boast about your ability to made whatnots, you won’t be considered.

3. Tailor the resume not only to the job being sought, but also dovetailing what you’ve done/accomplished to the position’s requirements. In other words, spoon feed your credentials to the hiring manager who most likely is hurried, harried and can’t take the time to shift through your documents to find what s/he needs.

If you don’t follow this advice, if you make it hard on a hiring manager to know what you can do, or if you write one cover letter/resume and shoot it out to everyone hoping for the best, you’re going to be waiting and hoping for a very long time.

  • Rachel

    Hello there,
    First, what a refreshing website. Trying to find a great resource for resume writing is quite difficult.
    I had a question about writing your cover letter to a specific person. I’ve found it can be difficult to pin point who will be reading my resume, especially in larger companies where there are multiple HR employees. Wouldn’t it be worse to write the wrong name than a generic opening?
    If you have any tips on the proper way to figure out who will be reading a cover letter that would be greatly helpful. I do not want to bother them on the phone before they see my resume.
    Thank you so much!

    ANSWER: The best thing to do is to leave off the salutation. After the date, write:

    RE: Administrative Assistant position

    In other words, the name of the position – or –

    Re: Position #5879001

    The number being the posting you’re responding to.

    After that, simply begin your cover letter

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