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Resume Surgeon > Resume Surgeon Advice > Cover Letter Writing > Common Cover Letter Mistakes

Cover letters can really help to personalise your job application and some employers prefer to read a cover letter than a resume. A study by the Society for Human Resource Management found that two out of three resumes sent to employers are accompanied with a cover letter. The survey also revealed that 76% of employers, when asked, would discount a candidate’s resume if it contained typos. So grammatical errors on your cover letter could hinder your job interview chances but what other mistakes can be made?

Interview Tips

Getting Employer’s Name Wrong

Your cover letter is your chance to personalise your job application and speak to the employer directly and so if you get their name wrong or the name of the company wrong, it can damage the integrity of your cover letter. An employer will want to know that you’ve taken the time out to apply for the job and that you are genuinely interested in the role and a simple mistake like spelling their name wrong can reflect negatively on your resume template.

Not Knowing the Job Role

If you don’t research the job role and find out the main responsibilities, progression opportunities and deliverables then it will make it very difficult for you to personalise your resume to the job and to link your key skills and experience to the company. An employer will be reading your cover letter and looking for an explanation as to why you are the right candidate for the job and what you could bring to their company and if you don’t know the job role then this will come across during your cover letter writing and will make you look unprepared.

Not Telling Them You Want the Job

One of the biggest mistakes you can make on your cover letter is not telling the employer why you want the job. An employer will probably receive hundreds of resumes and cover letters for every role they advertise. There may be dozens of other candidates that share similar skills and qualifications. One way you can make your application stand out is by complimenting the employer and by telling them why you choose them and why you would like to work for them. Ignoring to do this will make your cover letter appear generic and may not grab the employer’s attention.

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