Cover Letter help, please?

Discussion in 'General Advice' started by Re Allyssa, Jun 16, 2019.

  1. Re Allyssa

    Re Allyssa Sylph of Heart

    I had a generic cover letter dealie that I was using but I wanted to beef it up a bit, and then I just ended up rambling so I want to kind of start from scratch and maybe use bits and pieces of what I've already written.

    The main problem I'm having is that I don't have any on-the-job experience for what I'm trying to apply for (Programmer/Software Engineer). I tried to be like "I'm really good at learning things really fast, no really!" without saying that I don't actually have the experience they want. That's what lead to the rambling.

    I know I'm cut out for the job, and the head of the Engineering department at my current job says that my resume looks pretty good for a Junior Full Stack Developer. I just haven't done it yet. Any code samples I have are a few years old because I haven't had the extra spoons to work on something in my free time.

    So, like, IDK what do
  2. Astrodynamicist

    Astrodynamicist Adequate Potato Goblin

    I am somewhat brain dead atm but down to try to help brainstorm another day
    • Like x 1
  3. sirsparklepants

    sirsparklepants feral mom energies

    In this kind of case I would emphasize relevant skills in the cover letter - have you used the programs they use before? Are you familiar with the kind of projects they work on? Are you good at meeting or exceeding deadlines? I honestly don't know what either of those jobs entail, but anything you've learned that's relevant to the job you're sending the cover letter to, talk about it!
    • Agree x 1
  4. Re Allyssa

    Re Allyssa Sylph of Heart

    That's the thing though, I don't have any experience with the programs or languages they're using.

    I just know that I became the resident expert on the programs we use at my current job in less than a few months - to the point that people with more tenure were asking me how to do things, or I would do something and they'd go "wait you can do that that way??"

    Basically, I know I can pick things up quickly, but there's not really a concrete way to show that. Or at least I don't know how to do so that isn't just the same buzzwords that are going to be in all the other cover letters.

    I also don't understand how in depth I'm supposed to go? I feel like I've gotten conflicting information wrt "concise quick overview" and "explain why they want you".

    A friend shared a little road map guide thingy, that I'll link once I can find it again, but I couldn't answer any of the questions on it because I don't have experience
  5. Astrodynamicist

    Astrodynamicist Adequate Potato Goblin

    With the caveat that I also don't understand how to length a cover letter, talking about this specifically seems it would avoid buzzworditis and convey what you need.
    • Like x 1
  6. Re Allyssa

    Re Allyssa Sylph of Heart

    I get a "so what?" Kinda feeling when I try to say something like that.

    Is it okay to say "I don't have the exact experience you're looking for but,"
    That feels like something you shouldn't just come out and say xD
  7. sirsparklepants

    sirsparklepants feral mom energies

    Talk about times when supervisors or coworkers have specifically noted your skills in picking things up quickly, then! "Before x project I was unfamiliar with y program, but within several months, many others were consulting with me on how best to do z task", or something of the like.

    Edit: also a cover letter isn't just about what you bring to the table, although that's an important part. It's about why you want this job, specifically, that you're applying for. So be sure to spend some time talking about why the company in question appeals to you, and that's a great space to talk about why you're looking to transition from your current position to the one you're applying for.
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2019
    • Agree x 2
    • Informative x 2
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