E-mailing Your Resume and Cover Letter

As a job seeker, I’ve attached a couple hundred resume/cover letter duos to emails before sending them off to be lost in the sea of applications. After speaking to a number of friends about their take on something as simple as emailing a resume, I’ve learned that there are a lot of areas for variation in sending your resume.


Can I possibly help you with that?

For example, Which document format do you use?

I had always sent my resume attached as a standard .doc file until one day I learned that a potential employer couldn’t open the file. I immediately switched to .pdf files. PDF files are easy to open and ensure that your resume formatting remains consistent.

Should your email contain your Cover Letter?

I’ve been asked a couple times whether I paste my cover letter into the email that my resume is attached to. I know that some people swear by this method, but I’ve always kept my cover letter separate to avoid information over-load. I typically email my resume and cover letter as a single attachment and write a short email of introduction.

What do you say in the email?

I write a very brief introduction to myself, a statement of interest/intent, and I always refer the reader to my attached cover letter and resume.

**However, I found this post on Businessweek that suggests that instead of attaching a cover letter to your email, a brief email cover letter would suffice.

So, as always, it comes down to personal preference.

How do you send your email resume/cover letter? There are likely endless possibilities for this seemingly basic task!


Speaking too soon: Don’t be Afraid to Follow-up

When I was in university I awoke one morning craving a cup of tea, but my tea mug was nowhere to be found. Then I saw it – full of potting soil on the window sill.

I confronted my roommate a few minutes later, asking “Why on earth would you plant something in my coffee mug?“. Her response: “I didn’t see your name on it.” I turned the cup to reveal my name engraved on the side – this was a coffee mug designed by my best friend as a gift.

All she could say was “Oh! My bad”.

We all have these moments. We speak too soon. We miss details. We perceive things from one side – and we end up sweating unnecessarily.

And it’s not just in our daily tasks that our perceptions get the best of us. Your job search can be negatively impacted by misperceptions as well.

Take follow-ups for example.

No one feels completely at ease when following up after a job interview or after sending in a job application. Most people, myself included, feel awkward, intimidated, and pushy. However, following-up is an important part of the application process. It lets the hiring manager know that you’re interested and gives you a chance to remind them of what a great applicant you are.

But here’s the reality – hiring managers don’t really put as much thought into reading/listening to your follow-up as you think. In fact, in the course of their day, your follow-up is minute, provided you write something professional and brief (perhaps another blog post to come…). It’s just a little reminder and thank-you, nothing more.

So stop sweating the little stuff! There’s no need to over-think and psych yourself out!! Let’s stop fearing the follow-up.

Perception is power: check out this photo of my kitty. Is she actually about to leap off the side of a ledge?

Nope! It’s all perception.

Do you sweat over following up after an interview? Have you had a good experience as a result of following up? As always, I’d love to hear from you!