Thursday, February 16, 2012

Proofreading Your Cover Letter

All job seekers know they have to proofread their resume and cover letter before sending them out to employers.  But do you know the correct way to do this?

There are actually multiple different ways to check a document for mistakes, and some are more effective than others.  If all you are doing is reading over your cover letter once and calling it a day, you are probably leaving some costly mistakes behind.  Here are some effective ways to make sure you don't spoil a perfectly good application with sloppy errors:
  • Print your cover letter out instead of reading it on the screen.  It's easier to catch errors reading on a plain piece of paper than a bright screen.  It also helps to print your cover letter out in a larger than normal font.
  • It can be awkward sometimes, but try reading it out loud.  The ear often catches mistakes that the eyes don't see.
  • Speaking of which, have someone read your cover letter over for you.  An outside observer will not only catch typos you may have missed, they will also be a better judge of awkward or confusing sentences.  Things that make sense in our own heads can be confusing to other people.
  • Make sure your punctuation is consistent if you have any bulleted items.  For example, if you use a period in one bullet, make sure you use them in the others.
Do you have any tips of your own to help the proofreading process?  Feel free to share them with us.

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