Both cover letters and resumes are essential when applying to a job. However, each format has its own specific style so it is important not to confuse the two in the preparation process.
The cover letter introduces the candidate as well as explains to the prospective employer the reasons and qualifications for applying to the specific job.
A resume is the listing of experiences, accomplishments, and education that one has accumulated over the years.
These are the five ways that cover letters and resumes differ:
- While the resume is brief in nature, the cover letter should expand on any details that the resume may have left off, including explanations for inconsistencies.
- The cover letter should be an actual letter with complete sentences and divided paragraphs while the resume can have bullet points and phrases.
- The cover letter attempts to get further consideration from whomever reads it while the resume is the basis for which they see the candidate’s background and qualifications.
- A resume outlines past accomplishments and experiences while a cover letter expresses future goals.
- The cover letter can express more enthusiasm in the language while resumes should follow a rigid and professional tone.
As you can see, the two go hand in hand. So, be sure to have your cover letter prepared and detailed for each job posting that you apply for.