Assessing your Cover Letter Skills

cover Cover letters are self-introductions accompanying any résumé that you don’t actually hand to an employer. They explain your résumé, identify the position you are seeking, and highlight your key strengths for it so that employers can understand why they would benefit from interviewing you.

Evaluate the strength of your cover letter, rating each of the following 1-3 (3 is high). Items with an asterisk * are considered essential.

You have written your letter to a specific individual for a specific position. If this is impossible to find, you have addressed your message to the person’s likely job title, e.g., “Dear Internship Coordinator.”
You make it explicitly clear in what ways your background matches the requirements outlined in the job ad or description.*
You emphasize your three greatest strengths relative to the position, giving at least one full sentence to each.
You focus on ways in which you can benefit the employer rather than stating what you would gain from the position.*
You address the ways you plan to follow-up after the letter is sent.
Your letter is well-written and free of typographical errors.*
Your letter matches your résumé in font style and size, if printed or PDF.

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