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An AMAZING Cover Letter "Secret" That Has PROVEN To Have Great Results For My Clients

I work at a job center – mostly with clients who have been looking for work for a long time but haven’t had any success. Because it’s a large job center, we often have several clients applying the same jobs. After working there a few months, I began to notice something I found really odd and perplexing.

The very best applicants very often didn’t even get called in for an interview, let alone get the job!

When I say “best” I’m talking about some top of the line job candidates: best resume, best experience, best references, best performance in school, extra training, good match for the job, etc…

These top candidates often got completely overlooked!

To make this even more perplexing, I noticed that often times candidates that were FAR less qualified, including very obvious examples, were called for an interview and hired to the exclusion of the very best candidates.

I began to ask my colleagues, “What the heck is going on here!?” but they couldn’t figure it out either.

The first few times this happened I just thought maybe it was a fluke or perhaps the people who got the job knew someone in the company. However, after it happened again and again and again, I began to slowly realize something else had to be going on.

I couldn’t figure it out at first. It made no sense and the more I studied it the less sense it made. I’d pour over the application materials and I’d re-interview the clients.

I really care about my clients and I wanted to help them but I was stomped.

Then one day, while reviewing a couple of recent cases, I had one of those “Ah-HA!!!” moments. It all had to do with the cover letter!

The applicants who had inadvertently turned in a UNIQUE cover letter were the ones getting called for the interviews. They weren’t necessarily the best candidates but they had a very unique cover letter.

Now, notice I didn’t say “best cover letter” or “professional cover letter.” I said “unique cover letter!”

After some more research and doing some follow-up interviews with some of the hiring managers, I determined that they were getting so many applications they simply did not have time to review every application in detail. What they did instead was quickly read all the cover letters and make their preliminary choices based solely on this.

Now, here’s where the best candidates often got into trouble. They did what most people do and that is take a professional cover letter template and modify it for their purposes. In this way, they get a professional sounding letter to include but guess what? It sounded like every other person’s professional sounding letter. In other words, it doesn’t stand out! It was easily passed over by the hiring manager in a hurry to read all the letters in that giant stack of applications they have to go through.

What this means is that the resumes of the best qualified candidates weren’t even being read by the hiring managers because their cover letters were so “vanilla” they didn’t attract any attention from the hiring manager and they were quickly put into the reject pile.

Do I think this is fair? NO!!

However, it is the current reality with our very tight job market when hiring managers get absolutely swamped with mountains of applications.

Once I started working with my best applicants to change their cover letters to something really unique, they started getting interviews and getting hired. Now, life makes sense again.


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