How to Use a

Job Description
         to Prepare a

 Cover Letter

   Created By: Amy Middleton
     Twitter:  @orangewal...
A quick aside-



These slides vary in length
    click through at your own pace

(don’t use auto-play)
Why Cover Letters Matter

 Now, imagine you are looking for
 someone to do a service for you…
You want someone to
walk yo...
Why Cover Letters Matter

 You create an ad:


       Dog Walker Needed
       Must love dogs.
Why Cover Letters Matter

 George emails you:




 I love dogs!
 I have 6 of my own and
 we go walking every day!
Why Cover Letters Matter

 Ringo emails you:


 To whom it may concern.
 Please see attached
 resume.

            {     ...
Why Cover Letters Matter



 Who are you more impressed by?
 Whose resume are you going to bother
 to open?
Why Cover Letters Matter

 Now imagine that your dog has
 diabetes, and you need someone
 who can meet his medical needs
...
Why Cover Letters Matter

 You make your ad:


      My dog has diabetes, and I
      need someone who can
      meet his...
Why Cover Letters Matter

 George emails you:




 I love dogs!
 I have 6 of my own and
 we go walking every day!
Why Cover Letters Matter

 Paul emails you:


 So sorry to hear about your dog! My terrier had cataracts
 and a heart con...
Why Cover Letters Matter




 Who are you going to follow up with on
 this ad?
What You are Seeking is Seeking You


 If you are an employer, you want to know
 that the person you hire isn't just a gr...
What You are Seeking is Seeking You




Your goal as a job candidate is
 to prove you are what the
 employer is looking f...
What You are Seeking is Seeking You


  This presentation will help you

use the job description
to prepare a cover lette...
The Job Description

 Think of the job description as

Your secret weapon
The Job Description

 They are showing you exactly what they are
 looking for.
The Job Description

 But when job descriptions stop looking like this:

            Dog Walker Needed
            Must l...
The Job Description

 And start to look more like this:
           Responsibilities:
           Student advising duties i...
The Job Description

 It’s hard to know what you should be
 responding to.
The Requirements Outline

 This should help you get a better handle on things:


Exercise 1: Create a
Requirements Outline
The Requirements Outline

In this exercise, you'll turn the
 job description into a
 bulleted outline.
The Requirements Outline

 A paragraph contains too many ideas to
 deal with at once.

      Resource referral duties inc...
The Requirements Outline

 Step 1: Break paragraphs into sentences.


 Resource referral duties include maintaining a co...
The Requirements Outline

 Even a sentence has too many ideas to
  deal with at once.

 Resource referral duties include...
The Requirements Outline

 Step 2: Break sentences into unique ideas.

    Resource referral duties include maintaining a...
The Requirements Outline

 Your Requirements Outline should be concise:
  no sentences or serial commas.

            Res...
The Requirements Outline

 Once you’ve created a Requirements Outline, you
 should know exactly what the company is looki...
The Response Outline
 It’s time for:



Exercise 2: Create a
Response Outline
The Response Outline

Your Response Outline is going
 to respond to each item in
 your Requirements Outline.
The Response Outline


 Requirement              Response
 Must be a hard worker    I am a hard worker
The Response Outline

 Try to Respond to each Requirement using



  Skills
  Experience
  Accomplishments
The Response Outline

 Your Requirements Outline asks for:



            •Knowledge of
            lifesaving and
      ...
The Response Outline

 You could respond with skills:



 Requirement              Response
                          Ski...
The Response Outline

 You could respond with experience:



 Requirement             Response
                         E...
The Response Outline

 You could respond with accomplishments:



 Requirement             Response
                     ...
The Response Outline



Remember, the purpose of this
 outline is to help you confidently
 respond with your strengths an...
Filling in Missing Pieces

 At this stage, avoid using qualifiers such as


 However
 But
 Even though
Filling in Missing Pieces

“I don't know the software,
but I can learn”
is better framed as....
Filling in Missing Pieces

“I can learn the software
 because ___________.”
 I already know other products in the suite.
...
Filling in Missing Pieces

 Your Requirements Outline states:


         •Must have at least 6
         months exp wrappi...
The Response Outline

 If you have five months’ experience rather than the
 required six, you could say :

 Requirement  ...
The Response Outline

 If you are a skilled gift wrapper but have no sandwich
 wrapping experience, you could say:

 Requ...
Putting it All Together

 By this point, your Response Outline
 should be a reflection of your
 Requirements outline, mak...
Putting it All Together

Requirement                        Response
 5+ years relevant work            I’ve worked as a...
Putting it All Together

Requirement                        Response
  work collaboratively with
                        ...
Putting it All Together

Your Response Outline
provides you with the meat
and potatoes of your
Cover Letter.
Putting it All Together


  Review it
  Feel good about it
  Own it
 Use it
Putting it All Together

 Armed with a solid list of your
   skills
  experience
  and accomplishments
tailored to you...
Finishing Touches


A few final suggestions
 for your Cover Letter
Finishing Touches


Use your Response Outline
 as a resource, but only
 include relevant items
Finishing Touches


Do some research
about the company
beyond what you’ve read
in the job description
Finishing Touches


Be professional but personal
Show personal interest
 in the position and
 company
Finishing Touches


Get feedback on your
 Cover Letter
Invite someone (or everyone)
 to review it for grammar,
 punctuat...
Finishing Touches

 If you can edit the subject line, include your
  name (this helps the recipient find your letter if y...
Finishing Touches


Good luck!
All the best in your job search
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Prepare a Cover Letter using a Job Description

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Two exercises and some helpful tips that walk you through preparing a tailored cover letter (works best if you don't use auto-play).

For complete course, visit:
https://www.udemy.com/the-cover-letter-code-for-job-and-career-applications/

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Prepare a Cover Letter using a Job Description

  1. 1. How to Use a Job Description to Prepare a Cover Letter Created By: Amy Middleton Twitter: @orangewalk Personal Site: crankybabicult.com
  2. 2. A quick aside- These slides vary in length click through at your own pace (don’t use auto-play)
  3. 3. Why Cover Letters Matter  Now, imagine you are looking for someone to do a service for you… You want someone to walk your dog.
  4. 4. Why Cover Letters Matter  You create an ad: Dog Walker Needed Must love dogs.
  5. 5. Why Cover Letters Matter  George emails you: I love dogs! I have 6 of my own and we go walking every day!
  6. 6. Why Cover Letters Matter  Ringo emails you: To whom it may concern. Please see attached resume. { } Meanwhile Ringo is thinking: If I didn't love dogs, why would I be applying as a dog walker? I've already addressed this in my resume. I hate cover letters.
  7. 7. Why Cover Letters Matter  Who are you more impressed by?  Whose resume are you going to bother to open?
  8. 8. Why Cover Letters Matter  Now imagine that your dog has diabetes, and you need someone who can meet his medical needs while going on slow, labored walks with him.
  9. 9. Why Cover Letters Matter  You make your ad: My dog has diabetes, and I need someone who can meet his medical needs while going on slow, labored walks with him.
  10. 10. Why Cover Letters Matter  George emails you: I love dogs! I have 6 of my own and we go walking every day!
  11. 11. Why Cover Letters Matter  Paul emails you: So sorry to hear about your dog! My terrier had cataracts and a heart condition towards the end of his life, and I learned everything I could about the disease in order to care for him. Our slow walks together are some of my best memories of him.
  12. 12. Why Cover Letters Matter  Who are you going to follow up with on this ad?
  13. 13. What You are Seeking is Seeking You  If you are an employer, you want to know that the person you hire isn't just a great person. You want to hire the right person for your specific job.
  14. 14. What You are Seeking is Seeking You Your goal as a job candidate is to prove you are what the employer is looking for.
  15. 15. What You are Seeking is Seeking You This presentation will help you  use the job description to prepare a cover letter that proves you are what they are looking for.
  16. 16. The Job Description  Think of the job description as Your secret weapon
  17. 17. The Job Description  They are showing you exactly what they are looking for.
  18. 18. The Job Description  But when job descriptions stop looking like this: Dog Walker Needed Must love dogs.
  19. 19. The Job Description  And start to look more like this: Responsibilities: Student advising duties include counseling students about academic policies, programs, and options, assisting students in the development of meaningful educational plans, and supporting students by helping them to identify and assess alternatives and the impact of their decisions. An Advising Dean supports students as they develop greater responsibility for their educational goals, evaluate post-graduate options, and transition to life after college. Resource referral duties include maintaining a comprehensive knowledge about all academic policies and procedures, core requirements, pre-professional information, and all non-major specific information. An Advising Dean will work collaboratively with faculty, academic departments, the Center for Career Education, other campus resources and other departments within the Division of Student Affairs to provide students with necessary scholastic, co-curricular and personal resources. Programming duties include supporting the programming efforts of the Center for Student Advising and large scale Student Affairs programs such as the Summer Advising sessions, Pre-First Year Summer Program…
  20. 20. The Job Description  It’s hard to know what you should be responding to.
  21. 21. The Requirements Outline  This should help you get a better handle on things: Exercise 1: Create a Requirements Outline
  22. 22. The Requirements Outline In this exercise, you'll turn the job description into a bulleted outline.
  23. 23. The Requirements Outline  A paragraph contains too many ideas to deal with at once. Resource referral duties include maintaining a comprehensive knowledge about all academic policies and procedures, core requirements, pre-professional information, and all non-major specific information. An Advising Dean will work collaboratively with faculty, academic departments, the Center for Career Education, other campus resources and other departments within the Division of Student Affairs to provide students with necessary scholastic, co- curricular and personal resources.
  24. 24. The Requirements Outline  Step 1: Break paragraphs into sentences.  Resource referral duties include maintaining a comprehensive knowledge about all academic policies and procedures, core requirements, pre-professional information, and all non-major specific information.  An Advising Dean will work collaboratively with faculty, academic departments, the Center for Career Education, other campus resources and other departments within the Division of Student Affairs to provide students with necessary scholastic, co-curricular and personal resources.
  25. 25. The Requirements Outline  Even a sentence has too many ideas to deal with at once.  Resource referral duties include maintaining a comprehensive knowledge about all academic policies and procedures, core requirements, pre-professional information, and all non-major specific information.
  26. 26. The Requirements Outline  Step 2: Break sentences into unique ideas. Resource referral duties include maintaining a comprehensive knowledge about all  academic policies and procedures, core requirements, pre-professional information, and all non-major specific information.  Resource referral duties include  maintaining a comprehensive knowledge about • all academic policies and procedures • core requirements • pre-professional information • all non-major specific information
  27. 27. The Requirements Outline  Your Requirements Outline should be concise: no sentences or serial commas. Resource Referral Duties maintain a comprehensive knowledge about   academic policies and procedures  core requirements  pre-professional information  all non-major specific information work collaboratively with   faculty  academic departments  the Center for Career Education  other campus resources  other departments within the Division of Student Affairs provide students with necessary resources:   scholastic  co-curricular  personal
  28. 28. The Requirements Outline  Once you’ve created a Requirements Outline, you should know exactly what the company is looking for. Now it’s time to show that you are the right person for the job.
  29. 29. The Response Outline  It’s time for: Exercise 2: Create a Response Outline
  30. 30. The Response Outline Your Response Outline is going to respond to each item in your Requirements Outline.
  31. 31. The Response Outline Requirement Response  Must be a hard worker  I am a hard worker
  32. 32. The Response Outline  Try to Respond to each Requirement using Skills Experience Accomplishments
  33. 33. The Response Outline  Your Requirements Outline asks for: •Knowledge of lifesaving and first aid techniques.
  34. 34. The Response Outline  You could respond with skills: Requirement Response Skills •Knowledge of lifesaving and I know first aid first aid techniques. and CPR.
  35. 35. The Response Outline  You could respond with experience: Requirement Response Experience •Knowledge of lifesaving and I have been a certified first aid techniques. American Red Cross Water Safety Instructor for the last three Summers.
  36. 36. The Response Outline  You could respond with accomplishments: Requirement Response Accomplishments •Knowledge of lifesaving and Last Summer, I rescued a first aid techniques. child using CPR.
  37. 37. The Response Outline Remember, the purpose of this outline is to help you confidently respond with your strengths and abilities.
  38. 38. Filling in Missing Pieces  At this stage, avoid using qualifiers such as However But Even though
  39. 39. Filling in Missing Pieces “I don't know the software, but I can learn” is better framed as....
  40. 40. Filling in Missing Pieces “I can learn the software because ___________.”  I already know other products in the suite.  I am familiar with the interface.  I have used a similar program for two years.
  41. 41. Filling in Missing Pieces  Your Requirements Outline states: •Must have at least 6 months exp wrapping sandwiches (hoagies, heros,) { but you don’t! }
  42. 42. The Response Outline  If you have five months’ experience rather than the required six, you could say : Requirement Response Experience •Must have at least 6 I have several months’ months exp wrapping sandwiches experience wrapping sandwiches
  43. 43. The Response Outline  If you are a skilled gift wrapper but have no sandwich wrapping experience, you could say: Requirement Response Skills •Must have at least 6 I am an adept wrapper, with 8 months exp wrapping months’ experience quickly sandwiches wrapping packages of various sizes.
  44. 44. Putting it All Together  By this point, your Response Outline should be a reflection of your Requirements outline, making it clear that you are the person the company is looking for.
  45. 45. Putting it All Together Requirement Response  5+ years relevant work  I’ve worked as an Administrative experience Assistant for the past 7 years.  Highly proficient with MS  I’m an expert at MS Outlook including Outlook applications • Calendar (I support the calendar of 3 • calendar EVPs and 2 SVPs) • email • email • evite • evite  Confidentiality and  I am professional and discrete with discretion are required with confidential matters. private business matters  I’m a great organizer. I created a  Well organized filing system that was rolled out corporate-wide.  Strong interpersonal and multi-tasking skills  I have strong interpersonal, verbal, and multi-  Precise attention to detail tasking skills.  Excellent verbal skills  I have excellent attention to detail.
  46. 46. Putting it All Together Requirement Response work collaboratively with   I have worked  faculty collaboratively with  academic departments  faculty (often liaising  the Center for Career with students and Education work collaboratively with clarifying policy)  faculty  academic departments  academic departments (including establishing  the Center for Career Education course requirements)  other campus resources  Campus resources  other departments within  Student Life Dept. the Division of Student Affairs
  47. 47. Putting it All Together Your Response Outline provides you with the meat and potatoes of your Cover Letter.
  48. 48. Putting it All Together  Review it  Feel good about it  Own it Use it
  49. 49. Putting it All Together  Armed with a solid list of your  skills  experience  and accomplishments tailored to your Job Description, writing your Cover Letter should be easy!
  50. 50. Finishing Touches A few final suggestions for your Cover Letter
  51. 51. Finishing Touches Use your Response Outline as a resource, but only include relevant items
  52. 52. Finishing Touches Do some research about the company beyond what you’ve read in the job description
  53. 53. Finishing Touches Be professional but personal Show personal interest in the position and company
  54. 54. Finishing Touches Get feedback on your Cover Letter Invite someone (or everyone) to review it for grammar, punctuation, and content
  55. 55. Finishing Touches  If you can edit the subject line, include your name (this helps the recipient find your letter if your email is forwarded and it loses the “from” line)  FWD: Internet SEM/PPC Professional  FWD: Amy Middleton: Internet SEM/PPC Professional
  56. 56. Finishing Touches Good luck! All the best in your job search
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