Page 3 of the Cover Letter Tutorial: Answer
When Should You Send a Cover Letter?
Generally anytime you send out your resume. Never send your resume out without a cover letter. Even when employers don’t specifically ask for a cover letter in their job ads they expect one.
The exception is the occasional posting that states “resumes only.” That’s usually a tip-off that the company is expecting a large volume of responses and plans some sort of major screening of the many resumes that come in. These days the screening device is likely to be the electronic scanning of resumes in which computers are programmed to screen out resumes that don’t contain the exact specifications the employer seeks. Sometimes however if you make the cut after resumes are winnowed down to a manageable level the employer may contact you and ask you to send a cover letter at that point.
Cover Letter Tip:
When dealing with employers that simply want you to submit your resume to their applicant database do so but then go around the system by conducting research and/or using your network of contacts to uncover the name of the hiring manager… and then submit a full job-search package of dynamic cover letter and resume to that individual. Trust us you will have MUCH greater job-search success using this two-prong approach!
Lost? Check out the Map to the Cover Letter Tutorial… or go to the home page of the Cover Letter Tutorial for Developing Stunningly Effective Job-Search Cover Letters.