In today’s job marketplace, many hiring personnel expect to see a cover letter from applicants. This is a short, one-page letter that conveys aspects of your skills, qualifications and personality that may not have fit on the resume.
Writing a good cover letter is an important part of applying for a job in the U.S. from Canada. Unless an employer specifically states that no cover letters should be sent, including one with your application packet is always a good idea. This is a valuable opportunity to introduce yourself to potential employers, so don’t waste it by sending a subpar letter. The following mistakes are particularly common ways in which jobseekers inadvertently create the wrong impression. Get it right by checking your own cover letter and fixing the errors you find.
Sending the Same Letter to Everyone
Even when you are searching for the same general type of job in the U.S. from Canada, individual positions and employers can vary quite a bit. You can save yourself some time by creating a basic outline, but you need to customize every letter you send if you want to catch hiring managers’ attention. A close reading of the job posting and some basic research on the prospective employer will help you identify a few particularly relevant points to include.
You want to highlight your suitability for the position and stand out from the rest of the applicants, so your letter should convey a distinct sense of your personality. For this reason, you should avoid commonly used clichés and corporate buzzwords. Use your common sense and your knowledge of the employer to develop an appropriate tone for your letter. For example, a cover letter to an edgy reality show producer should sound very different than one to a maker of staid educational documentaries.
Failing to Proofread When Applying for a Job in the U.S. From Canada
Your ability to spell correctly or detect typos may be completely irrelevant to anything you will do if you get your desired job in the U.S. from Canada. Nevertheless, it is crucial that your cover letter be entirely error-free. Mistakes in spelling, grammar and punctuation project an impression of carelessness and lack of education. No matter how impressive your credentials, a cover letter that is less than perfect will substantially decrease any chance of employers taking a second look at your application. Do not rely on your computer’s spell-checking and grammar-checking programs. They can be helpful for an initial check but will not detect several types of errors, such as incorrect use of homonyms. Review your document several times, and enlist a friend or relative for a final check to catch anything you may have missed.
Keep in mind that hiring managers are typically busy people going through large quantities of applications. It is unlikely that they want to read several pages of verbosity. For this reason, when you prepare your cover letter for a job in the U.S. from Canada, take care to include only a few relevant and essential points. Too much information will confuse readers and distract them from the facts you most want to get across. Above all, aim for a letter that is concise, clear and organized. Avoid overly descriptive details and convoluted sentence structures, as well as clunky or pretentious wording. Most cover letters should not be more than a page long.
Use formatting to create visual and substantial clarity. Your font should be of a professional appearance and a legible size. Adequate spacing and margins are likewise important for readability and organization. Using bullet points to highlight important points draws attention and makes your list easier to read.
Writing a great cover letter is an effective way to start off on the right foot when applying for a job. Avoiding common mistakes is the first step toward crafting a stellar letter that will help your application stand out positively.