Today’s application process is very different than the processes of old. While hiring managers still oversee the hiring process, many companies no longer have an actual person perform the initial screening of job applications.
In fact, many applications are run through programs that check for keywords that match requirements and skills in the job description. The cover letter is no different.
Cover Letter Basics
Some of the basic cover letter dos are still a must such as keeping your contact information current, addressing the letter to a specific person, and highlighting your experience, skills, and accomplishments that will be elaborated on in your resume.
However, that’s where the similarities end. The remote job cover letter, or any cover letter that will travel through cyberspace, has two major differences.
#1 – Unless specifically noted in the job description, or if the type of job requires you to place greater detail into the cover letter, you want to keep your cover letter short, very short. I’ve run into several instances where the company specifically wanted no more than six sentences. By keeping the cover letter short, you also decrease your chances of having grammar, punctuation, and spellings errors throughout.
#2 – Be sure to also include as many keywords as possible so that computer programs can pick up those keywords, giving you a greater chance of having your application stand out AND getting passed on to the hiring manager for further review. However, do be honest with the skills and experience you have. Simply plugging in keywords won’t fool the hiring manager and won’t get you an invitation for an interview.
In addition to making your cover letter remote-job ready, there are also best practices when it comes to ensuring your application gets noticed.
First, you want to be sure you’ve read the application instructions carefully. One mistake can cost you the interview.
Next, never place anything in the cover letter that you can place in the email, and vice versa. And, make sure the potential employer can read the email in one minute or less.
Finally, and probably the most important step, check your application before hitting the send button, making sure everything is filled out properly, there are no grammatical or punctuation errors, and all attachments have been uploaded correctly.
You might be wondering, “This information is good and all, but how will it specifically help my chances of getting a remote job?”
There will be many more people applying for these jobs than if the job was restricted to one location. So, you need to be concise with what you have to say, highlighting your skills that best match the job description, while using as many keywords as possible in order to get noticed.
Also, your ability to create a cover letter that is successful in getting noticed will be to your advantage when applying for a remote job. It allows you to appear more business savvy, knowledgeable, and someone a remote company would want to hire. After all, if you appear to know how to get noticed in cyber space, you already look to be a better fit for a remote job.
~Shannon, Virtual Professions
*Featured image courtesy of Pixabay.