10 Attorney Resume Cover Letter Tips
Here are 10 attorney resume cover letter tips to get your cover letter and resume noticed at a law office. A cover letter and resume must set you apart from the hundreds of other applications that cross the hiring partner's desk. The competition for legal positions is always high, even in a good economy. This is especially true if you are not a blue blood law school graduate. The following are important points for you to consider as you draft your letter and resume. If you have not done a cover letter or resume in a long time (or ever), a review of the basics at the Virginia Tech web site, referenced below, will get you started.
- First sentence should get the reader’s attention. Set yourself apart in a positive way. Tell the hiring partner in one sentence why you are the best candidate.
- Supplement your resume. This is a good time to provide further explanation for the key selling points in your resume.
- Show that you researched the firm or office for which you are seeking employment. This is a great way to create the appearance of true interest in the position. You don't want your cover letter or resume look generic.
- Be positive. Everything in your cover letter and resume must be written in direct language. This is no time to highlight the weaknesses we all have.
- Be brief. A good legal brief gets to the point. A long-winded legal brief is usually a sign of weakness in a case. You want to send the message that you will be a good hire.
- See number 3 above. The resume should demonstrate that you have researched the firm and that you bring the prerequisites that fit the firm’s practice. Highlight your accomplishments that reflect the firm or office’s area of legal practice.
- Be 100% honest. You will be checked out thoroughly and any false or misleading information will kill any chance you have.
- Consider including a DVD or link to a video website. Communication skills and appearance are important. Paper or its electronic equivalent are not good ways to convey people skills which are critical for most attorney positions. Just make certain your video is good.
- Pay attention to detail. Typos or inaccurate information will show a lack of attention to detail. If you cannot get your resume right, why should a law office trust you with an important case or client?
- Show you are more than just a lawyer. Law offices are looking for well rounded, hard working people. Law offices are looking for people who will fit in. Demonstrate that you are the complete package and that you will be a positive addition to the office.