We all get lots and lots of email and simply don’t read most of it, so here are some quick tips to ensure your most important emails pass the easy-skim test.
Make sure you have the right address and pay attention if it bounces back. In fact, try to send to more than one person involved in the hiring. Alternatively, ask for a quick reply they received. Only some will comply, but it doesn’t hurt to ask.
This will depend on of you are applying for a job or following up. However, play it straight and short. Marketers will work hard to craft something that intrigues and compels the receiver to open it. You don’t need to. Something like “Clinical Position” or “Question About Clinical Position” are fine.
Studies show that if you personalize an email the recipient is more likely to read more of the content and act on it. So, start it with, “Hi Dr. Jones,” or “Hello Margaret,”
Keep your message short, in the 25-50 words range. Research shows that 28 words all but assures it will get read entirely. So, create a concise message, don’t paste your entire cover letter in the body. You want the office to print your resume AND cover letter. If you keep them separated that won’t likely happen.
Close with an informal salutation, like “Thanks,” then your name.
Along with your name, include one phone number (cell is best), and a link to something. This might be a social media profile (LinkedIn is excellent) or a website you own. Links are irresistible for people and if they can learn more about you through your link they will click it
There are studies that show readers will often go straight to the PS at the bottom of a printed message. If the body of your message is short in an email and the PS is visible, you can bet the same will hold true. This is an opportunity to throw in something unique that differentiates you. Drawing connections is one excellent way. For example: “ P.S. I used to work with your assistant, Julie Dow.” or “P.S. I met you at the annual conference last year.”
Finally, attach your resume and cover letter together as one document if possible. There are websites that will merge your documents for free (pdfjoiner.com is one of them). Only ever attach PDF files as it ensures your document will look the same for them as for you – fonts and formatting incompatibilities are a factor. You can create it in Word, Google Docs, Pages for Mac, or anything else, but save and send as a PDF.
Doug Perry is an expert resume writer and job search coach. He and his wife, Tracie, who is a dental hygienist, created GetHiredRDH in response to the challenging dental hygiene job market and have helped thousands of dental hygienists through tips and individual services. If you need individual, click here to contact Doug.