Spotlight for Career Services Professionals, August 17, 2011
by Kevin Gaw, Ph.D.
The strategically developed cover letter is fairly common in practice because it intuitively makes sense, but the method is rarely taught with deliberate intent. With the advent of automated keyword/phrase document screening algorithms used by employers, this method makes even more sense than ever.
The strategically developed cover letter deliberately draws from the job description and the student’s knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs), providing a “rubric” for the cover letter writer. This format has the typical initial and concluding sections of the letter—it is the middle section that makes it strategic. (Note: Though similar, it is not the “T-Letter,” which often conveys a canned and indifferent approach to the application.)
The strategically developed cover letter is a tailored, purposeful, and well-researched introduction of one’s candidacy. This said, each letter is unique and when read by an employer, the content is directly applicable to the position for which the employer is recruiting.
For more assistance in writing this type of cover letter, see your friendly career counselor here at BCC.