Due to the fact that most IT jobs primarily require a high degree of technical experience and ability, many job candidates in the industry assume that sending a resume to an employer on its own will sufficiently demonstrate their qualifications for a particular role. Resumes, after all, are intended to be clear-cut and straightforward documents that lay out the bare facts of your professional experience and skills.
While resumes are undoubtedly a crucial component that should be included in every job application, they don’t necessarily provide employers with an in-depth feel of an applicant’s character or unique abilities. In order to communicate those qualities, it’s essential to include a cover letter in every application that you submit in your IT job search.
What are the benefits of a cover letter?
As mentioned above, a resume – while very useful – should only be communicating the bare-bones facts of one’s career: work experience, education, technical skills, awards, contact information, and so on. A cover letter, on the other hand, should paint a picture in an employer’s mind of who you are, why you’re passionate about what you do, and how, specifically, your unique background, skills, and experience make you the best possible candidate for the role that you’re applying to.
In other words, it should take the facts that are contained in your resume and turn them into a story about how you’ve come to be who you are and where you are today.
What are the components of the ideal cover letter?
Compared to resumes, cover letters typically require a bit more time, thought, and effort. To simplify things a bit, here are four basic components that should be included in every cover letter:
- Greeting, such as “Dear Mrs. [insert name of hiring manager].
- Body paragraph containing an outline of your experience and the specific reasons why you’re a uniquely good fit for the job.
- Role and Industry-specific keywords placed strategically throughout the letter.
- Appropriate closing, such as “sincerely,” or, “thank you for your consideration.”
To learn more about how to format a compelling and effective cover letter, check out some of these templates.
At RightStone, we’re passionate about providing job candidates with the education and resources that they’ll need to advance to the next stage in their careers. To get started on your IT job search, contact us today!