How to Keep Control in Job Letters with Action Closes - dummies

How to Keep Control in Job Letters with Action Closes

By Joyce Lain Kennedy

After you write a great letter extolling your major match-up for the job you’re chasing, maintain momentum with a close that brings you closer to your goal: an interview. You have three basic choices: an action close, an action close plus, and a no-action close.

Action close

Close your letter by telling the reader when you will call for an interview. By setting the agenda, you assure your reader that you will follow up with an action step that brings together a competent candidate with a lucky employer. An action close says that you’re on the scene to help and will contact the employer at a specified time:

I’m ready to make money for you and look forward to speaking with you personally. I will call you early next week.

Action close plus

Pump up an action close with a suggestion for action sooner rather than later — “I’ll call you, but if you’re ready to roll, you can call me right away.”

An action close plus is the best choice for many situations. Your enthusiasm suggests that you’re organized and vigorous, but adding a note of urgency by inviting an employer to call you may motivate the employer to prioritize the interview and move up the timetable for a meeting.

Turning an action close into an action close plus is simple, requiring merely one line at the end of the close. The line is, “If you would like to meet with me sooner, you can reach me at (phone number, e-mail, or Twitter).”

I’m eager to sit down with you to discuss the contribution I can make to ABC Organization as it works to create a regional planning group. I’ll follow up with a call Wednesday, or you can reach me immediately on my mobile phone, at 888-888-8888. Thank you for your time and consideration.

No-action close

A no-action close hands control of the interviewing process to the employer. It essentially says that you’ll sit tight and wait for an employer to call. This is the weakest way to close your cover letter:

A copy of my resume is enclosed for your review and consideration. If you have an interest in my background, I would be pleased to hear from you.

Examples of the Action Closes

You need a competitive edge to get ahead in a competitive market today. You can do that by taking responsibility to follow up. Here are 16 solid closes to help you score that interview:

  • I look forward to our conversation. I’ll e-mail you in a few days to coordinate a time that’s convenient for you.

  • Because e-mail can’t replace face-to-face discussion, I’ll call soon to set up an interview.

  • Thank you in advance for reviewing my resume. I enthusiastically anticipate discussing my qualifications in an interview. I’ll contact you on Thursday to validate your interest.

  • I look forward to speaking with you personally to discuss your specific needs and my ability to meet them. I’ll call your administrative assistant next week to see what time would be most convenient for you.

  • I welcome a personal interview to discuss how my qualifications can augment your company’s excellent reputation for purchasing acumen. I’ll e-mail you on Tuesday to see whether we can meet.

  • I’m excited about employment opportunities within your agency and hope to explore contributions I can make. I’ll tweet you within the week to see when your calendar is open.

  • I hope to play an active role in the future prosperity of your organization. I’ll contact you next week to talk about this job or other positions where your needs and my talents meet.

  • As you requested, here’s my resume. I’ll check back with you next week to flesh out any blank areas. Thanks for your interest.

  • My resume follows. I’ll telephone you next week to answer any questions you may have and, I hope, set up a time convenient to meet in person.

  • Recognizing that you may be difficult to reach, I’ll check with your office next week to set a convenient time for us to meet. Flexibility is my middle name, and I’ll be glad to meet during or outside normal business hours. Thanks, and I look forward to meeting with you personally.

  • Thank you for calling me back today. I’m sorry I was not in but will telephone you tomorrow to find a convenient time to speak with you on the phone and meet you in person.

  • I’ll contact you within a few days to determine if and when your schedule will allow us to meet. Meeting you will not only be a pleasure, but offers profitable vistas for both of us. my thanks for your time.

  • As a resume is limited in the information it conveys, why don’t we meet in person? If you need additional facts before arranging an interview, call me at 888-888-8888. Otherwise, I’ll e-mail you next week to confirm your interest.

  • My salary needs are in line with the position’s description and what I bring in abilities. I’ll e-mail you Tuesday to see when we can explore specifics.

  • Perhaps we can meet and jointly explore the many ways I can save your organization considerable time and money. I’m flexible on timing during business hours or afterward. I’ll check your availability next week.

The purpose of a cover letter is to sell an employer on reading your resume and being motivated to take your call for an interview or to contact you for an interview. Without an interview, you’re unlikely to be offered employment.