Posted by: G. Lane Cavalier | May 8, 2007

Career Development: Customize your “Generic Resume” and Cover Letter

From a recent posting on Execunet:

Original Post >>

*** begin quote ***
Can we help each other?

In an email, please match/map out your experience to the job
I am going to assume that YOU HAVE A “generic” resume that you send
in response to positions you are interested in- and that’s okay but
your chances of getting in front of the client would be better if you
took a few moments and reviewed the position again and sent me an
email detailing your experience with each of the required
specifications of the job.

The biggest addition we need to have is the key words they are using
in the job description clearly indicated on your resume since non-
technologists will do keyword searches and dk your CV if they don’t
see it. For example, you can’t expect an HR person to know that “page
server” refers to FIX protocol.

The client is NOT interested in what you’ve done in your career as
much as HOW YOU FIT THEIR NEEDS. Please be as detailed as possible in
your email back to me. I look forward to our mutual success.

Please review the job description again and match up your experience
next to their requirements. Clients want a “square peg for a square
*** end quote ***

Don’t believe this old turkey; here’s a recruiter pushing trash back.

<< End of Post

My reply >>

Ouch! That hurt just reading it.

The best advice I got from my several grand mistake of hiring a “predator” back before I realized I was a Turkey, was to use a T-chart type of cover letter ( I think some refer to it as the Franklin Cover – after Ben Franklin, but never looked it up )

Basically it should be something like this (if I can make the formatting work)

Mr Recruiter,

I am the candidate of your dreams, I can do anything better than anyone else and I’d love to make your company more successful than even you can imagine.

I have taken the liberty of outlining the major requirements of the VP of Very Important Things with the skills that uniquely qualify me for this position:

Requirement: Qualification:

Manage very large budget I have successfully managed to budgets 10 times
that size while consistently exceeding delivery
expectations. An example of this is ######

{Rinse, Repeat until all Major requirements are covered or at least the most important 5}

Please reference my attached Resume with more details of my skills and abilities.

Thank you for your time and consideration, I look forward to talking with you (this week, Friday, etc.)

Your Name Here


Actually this exercise is good, because it may make you realize you are really applying for positions that fit your skills and desires as well.



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