Customizing your resume and cover letter

Searching for a job can be an overwhelming process. And when you finally hone in on the possibility of a perfect job, you don’t want anything to stand in your way. That’s why your resume and cover letter need to get you noticed –in the right way. Below are a few ways to make sure they do:

Cover Letter

While your cover letter needs to be as inpidual as you are, here are a few general tips to consider before you send off a bland note that might not get you the attention you deserve:

  • Don’t address your letter “to whom it may concern.” Instead, find out to whom itshould be addressed and give the reader their due respect.
  • Get right to the point. Your reader’s time is valuable –so don’t waste it! In the first line tell them the job you want: Dear Mr. Miller: I would like to be considered for the Medical Administrative Assistant position you recently advertised in the Kalamazoo Gazette.
  • Do some company research and then demonstrate your knowledge of the company with a positive spin. What do you know about the company and why do you like it?
  • And remember, it’s not what the company can do for you; it’s what you can do for the company. What skill set do you possess that makes you a unique candidate perfectly suited to the job?


You may understand the necessity of customizing your cover letter, but it’s equally important to tailor your resume to the job you are pursuing. Start with the objective, but take it even further by considering these suggestions:

Find out the programs and systems used at the company and make certain you include your qualifications to seamlessly link to them.

Pull language directly from the job description and include it on your resume. If your resume says that you ran a team and the job description asks for candidates who can lead a team; you’re now a leader. Even your job titles can be tweaked to fit your new job if they reflect the same competencies.

  • View your past positions in a new light. If you were once in retail, consider the full skill set you may have called upon to perform your job. Demonstrating skills in client interface and conflict resolution is another—and better—way of saying that you know how to handle difficult customers.
  • Include hobbies and interests. You never know how you’ll connect to the person conducting the interview. When it comes down to the final hire decision, it’s often just about whether or not they like you. And you’re more likeable when you have outside interests –particularly if they match the interviewer’s.

At Career Quest Learning Centers, we not only train you to work in fields with some of the best employment potential; we also offer career services including assistance with resumes and cover letters.


"I thought, why not go back to school and be able to help a family, give them that comfort that I received?"


“They personally know you and I think that’s the difference between a community college and Career Quest.”