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Excerpted from the Guatemala Career Guide

Cover Letter Guidelines

The relevance of cover letters is declining in Guatemala due to intensive email use. In addition, resumes are now personalized and recruiters do not request letters as often. However, it is good to have a letter ready in case it is required.

Cover letters give candidates a chance to catch the attention of potential employers and to provide further detail of why they are the best person for the job. They can accompany a resume or can be sent following a meeting or conversation when the resume was submitted.

Cover letters, like resumes, must be customized as much as possible to specific companies. In order to catch the reader’s attention and differentiate the sender from other candidates, the company and the position must be investigated in advance. The ability to mention current information about the target company demonstrates initiative and makes the cover letter more persuasive. Key information sources to conduct company research include the Internet, library reference materials, attending corporate information meetings, and talking to people who are familiar with the company.

Cover letters in Guatemala will be effective if they meet at least five basic objectives. They must be specific and personalized, that is, addressed to a particular individual in the target company, preferably one with decision-making authority. Also, they must make clear why the candidate is interested in working for the firm and explain how he/she can meet one or several needs of the company, preferably based on his/her skills and outstanding achievements. In addition, they must convey the idea that the candidate is the suitable individual for the job. Finally, they should open doors to future action and communication, such as suggest scheduling a meeting.

This is just a sample of what you'll find in the complete Guatemala guide.

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