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If you have a direct name (hiring manager, recruiter, etc.), all the better—make sure the opener is polite and personalized.If you don’t have a specific name, you can still personalize it to the company.
In the good example, the applicant shows that she’s done her research on Gina’s homemade cookie company (company size, general culture), and is showing how she might fit well in that (as a baking enthusiast and experienced admin).
The writer doesn’t necessarily go into her life history, but picks highlights that dovetail well with the job description.
I’ve worked in companies that are large, small, and somewhere in between, and have found that my skills fit best in a small, close-knit company like Gina’s.
I have experience implementing new systems that improve record keeping and office efficiency, and with working as part of a team coordinating complex schedules and details while making sure everything gets done on time.
“To Whom it May Concern” is the cover letter equivalent of getting mail addressed to “occupant”: chances are it’s going to be passed on without reading.
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It suggests that the cover letter writer is applying indiscriminately.Like with the opening address, it should be simple and polite.Not too flowery (“kindest warmest regards, dear recruiter” is…unnecessary. Well, except for the resume, the interview, and the negotiation.You want to make sure you’re aligning yourself with the job in the reader’s mind, and this is your last chance to do so before they read your resume.Like with your resume, you want your cover letter to be clear and easy to read.It also gives the reader a preview of the kinds of experience to expect in the resume.In the bad example, the cover letter body says nothing about the writer and does nothing to supplement the resume. Always have a closing paragraph that restates the highlights (why you’re a good fit) and leaves room for follow-up.For admin assistants, the cover letter can be a useful way to personalize your resume and packaging for the job to which you’re applying.Having been there, I know the pluses and minuses of having versatile admin experience—sure, you’ve got flexible skills that you can take pretty much everywhere.I would love to have to opportunity to join the team at Gina’s homemade cookies and bring my expertise in managing day-to-day office processes to your company. Crafting shorter, punchier paragraphs can help you focus your letter on the points you want the reader to notice, and keep it visually appealing as well.I believe I can meet and exceed the expectations you have for this role, and I look forward to speaking more with you about my application. After that closing pitch, all you have left is the closing.