“But why do I need a cover letter? No one will even read it!”
This is a common statement I hear these days. According to a recent jobvite survey only 26% of recruiters actually read cover letters. So therefore, the above statement appears to be true. Well I am here to tell you that it is, in fact, not true. Here is why.
In most cases, when a recruiter is involved, he or she is not the only one who will be reviewing your information during the application process. It is the recruiters job to weed through the mass amount of resumes and provide a short list to the hiring manager who will make the final decision on who will be offered an interview. This manager will likely be more interested in reading your cover letter.
Another important thing to remember is that a cover letter, whether it is read or not, demonstrates your drive and enthusiasm. Providing a letter will only increase your chances of obtaining an interview. You want to show the person reading your resume that you are willing to go above and beyond.
There are only two scenarios that I believe you should leave out a cover letter. First, when the job posting states that a cover letter is not wanted. Second, when the company’s website does not provide the opportunity to attach a cover letter.
Although many recruiters do not read cover letters many still expect to see one accompanied with a resume. A study by Career Builder found that 49% of Human Resource Managers still want a cover letter to be included in an application. Of course as an applicant it is frustrating to think you spend all that time on a document that may or may not be looked at but in the end that extra effort will still put you high on the list of potential successful applicants.