If you plan to apply in the USA, you need to know how to do so in a way that it not only leaves a good impression at prospective employers, but also evokes their interest in getting to know you better. This can be a difficult goal to achieve, but Global Choices would like to guide you through the myriad of formal and stylistic criteria to ensure you make the most of your application!
1. The Cover Letter
Your cover letter allows you to indicate the position you would like to apply for, your qualifications and skills, and the reasons why the employer should consider you for the position. Generally speaking, it should be no longer than 3 to 4 paragraphs. It is meant ot be a supplement to your resume — i.e. do not repeat exactly what you have listed there.
The cover letter is a great way for the employer to get to know you better, so make sure it is clear, informative, and grammatically correct. Since your resume will be sent to a number of different employers, you need to make sure that your cover letter is tailored not to a single position but to the specific type of postion you want to apply for. For example, if your desired job is in marketing, you should focus on one specific field in marketing (e.g. online marketing, sales, market research). Mention why you would like to work in this type of position, why in the US, and why you are the right person to do the job! We have assembled a sample cover letter that you should have a look at. And if you really want to stand out and gain a competitive edge, you can tailor your cover letter to each position you apply to!
2. The Resume (CV)
Your resume or CV (short for curriculum vitae) is a one-page schedular summary of your education, former employment, and skills. Its structure is standardized, however you are free to change fonts, font size and make minor(!) alterations to suit your needs.
The main sections are:
Your contact details and objective at the top (do not attach a photo!)
Your education (list in descending chronological order)
Your experience (always mention company, location, your position, and a summary of your tasks, list in descending chronological order)