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Back in the day, a well-written cover letter was a surefire way to get a potential employer’s attention. How else would your glimmering personality and uniqueness shine through?

In 2017, cover letters are starting to become obsolete. To figure out why we turned to our resident expert on hiring dos and don’ts, Mary Southgate Dickson — one of our Internal Talent Acquisition Consultants.

“In a lot of ways, cover letters as a whole are a bit of a dated concept,” Mary Southgate said. “I don’t see them a ton and often times feel like even when included, they’re not necessarily read by hiring managers or HR.”

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The reason? According to Mary Southgate, the meat of a resume is the key to getting a recruiter’s attention. Unlike a cover letter, the point of a resume is to list off skills and accomplishments as succinctly as possible. There’s no room for embellishment on a resume.

Applicants are also increasingly replacing the cover letter with digital portfolios and personal websites. This allows for two things: an employer can learn about the candidate at their own pace and the candidate can display their work and their personality.

Mary Southgate notes that even if the cover letter is no longer as common as it once was, it certainly won’t hurt your chances at securing an interview.

“When I do read cover letters, I appreciate a well-written summary of someone’s experience, and a quick explanation of why they’re interested in the company or job,” she said. Adding, “I don’t necessarily need to be wowed by a unique approach or creative cover letter—I think the more simple and informative the better.”

Of course, there are still cases where an application requires a cover letter. In that case, don’t panic! Follow our summarized cover letter tips below:

1) Keep it short and sweet
Summarize as best you can. That doesn’t mean writing incomplete sentences, but it does mean brevity is your friend. Remember to only include absolutely necessary information.

2) Be informative
As tempting as it is to write about how your experiences as a camp counselor prepared you for your role as a CPA, keep it simple. Discuss relevant experiences only. If you interned at a company during college that lent a hand to your current skill-set, make mention.

3) Prove it, 21st-century style
Show off your skills by including a link to your portfolio or personal website. Write a brief paragraph explaining what the web address contains and be on your merry way.

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