manufacturing practice

Featured Candidates & Positions

February 2021

Welcome Back,

Last month we went "Back to Basics" by doing a complete overview and overhaul of how to write a resume in 2021. As a continuation of this series, this month we examine and discuss the basics of the cover letter, it's relevancy today and how to write a compelling and effective one. But first, please see our Featured Candidates and Positions.


Featured Candidates for Employers

Candidate 1: Vice President and General Counsel, USA based

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This candidate is currently GC for a midsized global manufacturer, ($2 Billion). This professional has a wealth of broad, in-house legal experience for several global companies, including corporate, contracts, employment, IP, and more. This candidate currently manages a global team of 7 direct reports as well as many outside counsel relationships. This person would prefer to work for a global manufacturer and stay in the USA but can relocate for the right opportunity (has a history of relocation twice in the past). Email for more details or call +1-313-887-8300 ext. 102.


Featured Positions for Job Seekers

Position 1: New Business Development / Sales Manager, Off-Highway Construction/Mining/Agricultural equipment (could be home office/remote based)

Our client is a supplier of engineered steel fabrications to several industries for applications on heavy equipment. The company has won supplier awards at some of the top and largest construction, mining, and agriculture equipment OEM’s globally. In the role you will use your experience and existing relationships at top OEM’s such as Komatsu, Caterpillar, John Deere, CNH, Hitachi, and more. It is critical that you have demonstrated success at developing new business awards at these or similar companies. You will help to set the strategy and sales plan to align the company with the product roadmap and product needs at the customers in order to quote and win new programs within this sector. Email for more details or call +1-313-887-8300 ext. 102.

Position 2: Senior Export Control Official, Southeastern USA

Our client is a $14 billion, global manufacturer known for its high quality and durable products supplied to many industries worldwide. We have an opportunity to join an outstanding and growing team of trade compliance professionals. In this role you will help the Regional Americas Director to ensure legal entity compliance with export control laws and regulations, authorizations , and permits. You will also ensure corporate policies, implement and maintain compliance programs, provide export control training within the business and advise on export control matters. It is important that you have an expertise in US Export Control Laws/Regulations (EAR, ITAR, and OFAC). Email or call +1-313-887-8300 ex.102 for more info.

Position 3: Automotive Industry Sales Manager, Michigan Based

Our client is a smaller ($100 MM), growing supplier of castings, stampings, and some molded parts to the Tier One and OEM level. In this role you will learn about the company’s unique value add and hunt for/develop new business awards at target accounts. You will report to the Global Sales Director and join a team that has enjoyed success and growth of over 300% in the last decade. If you have 5-10 years of experience in selling to Tier One automotive suppliers and either a technical degree or an aptitude for learning new technology, this could be a great opportunity. Email or call +1-313-887-8300 ex.102 for more info.


Back to Basics: How to Write a Cover letter in 2021

Your resume is now perfected but you want to personally address the hiring manager for the job you are applying for and explain more directly why you are a good fit. You wish wish to point out some very important details in your career that make you unique and you wish to demonstrate your motivation. This is where your cover letter comes in.

What is a Cover Letter?
A cover letter is a single-page document that is sent along with your resume and addressed to the hiring manager(s). It introduces you and your resume to potential employers or organizations you seek to join. A cover letter does not reiterate things that are said on your resume but supplements and adds context instead.

Are Cover Letters Still Necessary?
There is widespread debate about whether the cover letter is still relevant or necessary in today's job market. While there are some mentions out there that the cover letter is outdated, according to a survey conducted by ResumeLab, 83% of the HR professionals surveyed say that the cover letter is important for their hiring decision. More importantly, 77% said they would give preference to someone who wrote a cover letter over someone who did not.

So now that you've decided to write up a cover letter, here are our tips for writing one.

Style and Structure

In general, the font and style of your cover letter should match your resume. Use easy to read fonts with a size of 10 to 12 points and black in color. Use a common and simple font such as Times New Roman, Arial, Cambria, Georgia, Calibri or Verdana.

Include a good amount of spacing between your header and body, between your paragraphs and at your formal closing. This makes the cover letter easier to read. Also keep a 2.5cm margin all the way around your cover letter.

Your cover letter should be a single page containing only 3 to 4 paragraphs. It might seem difficult to condense all that you wish to say into a few paragraphs but consider that a hiring manager will only have a few seconds to dedicate to your cover letter. Every word needs to count and any extra unnecessary sentences should be cut.

Writing a cover letter will seem less daunting if you follow this tried and true structure:

1. Header (Contact and Employer Information)
2. Greeting to the Hiring Manager
3. Introductory Paragraph - Attention Grabber
4. 2nd Paragraph - Why You're a Perfect Candidate for the Job
5. 3rd Paragraph - Why You're a Good Match for the Company
6. Conclusion and Closing
1. Header (Contact and Employer Information)
2. Greeting to the Hiring Manager
3. Introductory Paragraph - Attention Grabber
4. 2nd Paragraph - Why You're a Perfect Candidate for the Job
5. 3rd Paragraph - Why You're a Good Match for the Company
6. Conclusion and Closing


Header (Contact and Employer Information)
The header is where you include your name and contact information (address, phone number, email, and an optional LinkedIn URL/personal website URL) at the top of the document. Then write the date. Then write out who the cover letter is addressed to - include a name, their department (if applicable), the company and the address.

Greeting to the Hiring Manager
Try to find out the name of the hiring manager so you can address them directly here. Their name might be listed on the company website or on the job description. You could also contact the company's HR department to ask who the letter should be addressed to. If you cannot find their name, write "Dear Hiring Manager".

Introductory Paragraph - Attention Grabber
Your opening line should grab the attention of its readers and make you stand out from the rest of the applicants. No need to state your name since it is in the header. Avoid the mundane sentence "I am writing to apply for the position of [Job Title]. Get creative with your opening and demonstrate your excitement for the role and the reason you're applying.

2nd Paragraph - Why You're a Perfect Candidate for the Job
The next paragraph needs to explain why you are the best candidate for this position. Re-read the job description and identify the most important requirements for the role. Or identify a problem they are trying to resolve with this position. Then explain succinctly but in detail how your combination of skills, experience and education will meet those requirements and/or solve their problem. Use statistics if possible to substantiate what you are saying and to further convince the hiring managers. Do not just repeat something that is on your resume. This is an opportunity to give more detail about yourself.

3rd Paragraph - Why You're a Good Match for the Company
Hiring managers aren't just looking for the right skills and experience, they are also looking for the right cultural fit. For this paragraph, you should do some research on the employer. Research their products, their mission statement and core values. You can also check their social media pages to get a sense of their culture. Identify how you connect to this company on a personal/cultural level and explain this to the hiring managers.

Conclusion and Closing
Be sure to bring your enthusiasm for this role right to the end of your cover letter. If a relocation would be required, here is where you can mention your willingness. Thank the hiring manager for their time and them wrap up with a call to action. For example, express that you wish for further discussion or invite the hiring manager to call you if they have any further questions. And then finally signoff with a formal closing such as: Sincerely, Regards, Kind Regards, Best Regards, Thank You.

In Summary

To get noticed out of a sea of candidates, you should be writing a unique cover letter for every job you apply for. As time consuming as this seems, if you follow this basic formula, you will be giving yourself that competitive edge needed to move further in the application process.


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