Cover Letter and Resume Tips

As part of the job application process at the Department of Health Services (DHS), we always request a resume and will often ask for a cover letter.

It is recommended that each time you apply for a job; you update your cover letter and resume. You should describe your education, training, and experience related to items listed in the “Qualifications” section of the job announcement. If these qualifications are not clearly listed in your resume, it is important that you expand on that information in your cover letter. Be sure to read the job announcement completely and evaluate the skills required in order to match them with your own skills and experiences within your cover letter and resume. Your resume and cover letter must provide sufficient detail to represent your qualifications as a candidate.

If a cover letter is listed as a requirement in the “How To Apply” section of the job announcement it should include:

  • Additional information regarding your past work experience or coursework you have taken. A cover letter supplements and expands on the information provided in your resume.
  • Highlights of your most relevant skills and experiences as they relate to the specific job for which you are applying.
  • Clear descriptions of how your past education and experience relates to the duties of the position. Use the information provided in the job announcement to help make this connection in your cover letter.
  • Any training and experience you have related to the “Qualifications” section of the job announcement.

Your cover letter should not be a request for job experts to review your resume. Typically a cover letter is no more than two pages.

Your resume should include:

  • Your educational background including any course work that relates to the position for which you are applying.
  • Your employment history including a summary of accomplishments and skills used.
  • Your contact information including methods such as an email and a phone number.
  • Any training or experience you have related specifically to the “Qualifications” section of the job announcement.
Last Revised: November 7, 2017