Cover Letter Advice Please

  1. 0
    Hey everyone!

    I am about to graduate nursing school in August with my BSN. I will be getting a TN license but I want to work in Baltimore. I have already submitted applications to positions at Sinai, Northwest, and UMMC. I feel like my resume is good, but I'm not sure about my cover letter. I feel like its too long and/or maybe not saying what the hospitals want. In Leadership we were told to have 4 paragraphs. First paragraph details the position you are applying for and specific knowledge you have of the hospital. Second paragraph outlines your qualifications. Third paragraph has more background info about your self. And fourth paragraph thanks the reader and gives your contact info.

    So, does this sound good enough? In my third paragraph I decided to be a little unconventional and wrote it by explaining how I decided to become a nurse and how passionate I am about nursing. Examples I have seen dont really include that, but my line of thinking is it is different and possibly stands out and makes me unique.

    Does anyone who recently got hired at a Baltimore hospital have any tips on the cover letter? Also, who should I address the cover letter to? I couldnt find any names of nurse recruiters or HR reps. I addressed my cover letter to: Nurse Recruiter and Nurse Manager
    Address of Hospital
    I hope thats ok.

    I really really want to work in Baltimore and I hope someone has some advice for me on getting hired. Thank You!!
  2. 11 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    I work as a student tech at Northwest.

    Your third paragraph sounds great. The point of the cover letter is to make you stand out and not just be *another* person applying for the job.

    For my cover letter, I started off by saying what the postion is, where i heard about it, what it is looking for. Then I had a paragraph about my qualifications and how they fit the position's qualifications. The last paragraph was pretty much "I hope you review my resume and find that I am qualified for this postion. I hope to hear back from you with interview details. You can reach me at at *phone number* or *email*

    I addressed it to the nursing recruiter...

    Ms. Julia Farrell
    Human Resources Business Partner
    Northwest Hospital
    5401 Old Court Road
    Randallstown, MD 21133

    This is a link to recruiters that are part of this recruiter organization, NAHCR. You may find recruiters from other hospitals in it.

    http://www.nahcr.com/Members%5CDirec...CDirectory.pdf

    This is UMMs recruiter info (straight from the directory). If there is more than one, maybe it's best to find out who deals with new recruits.


    Sharan Lee Bidle RN,BSN,MSA
    Nurse Recruiter
    University of Maryland Medical Center
    110 S. Paca St. Ste. 101
    Baltimore, MD 21201
    Phone: 410.328.2699
    Fax: 410.328.8834

    sbidle@umm.edu

    Ann Bures RN, MA, CHCR
    Nurse Recruiter
    University of Maryland Medical Center
    110 S. Paca St. Ste. 101
    Baltimore, MD 21201
    Phone: 410.328.1873
    Fax: 410.328.8834

    abures@umm.edu

    I'n not sure if sinai's info is on there...
    Last edit by Lev <3 on Jun 30, '11
  4. 0
    Thanks alot for that info! I do hope I get a call from some one. My other concern is that under education info I put:
    Major: Nursing BSN
    Graduated: No
    License: Pending

    I know this is typical info for a soon to be graduate (6 weeks!), but I am afraid that they won't look thoroughly enough and will throw my app out as "Not Qualified"

    Fingers Crossed!
  5. 0
    Quote from NurseAndLovinIt
    Thanks alot for that info! I do hope I get a call from some one. My other concern is that under education info I put:
    Major: Nursing BSN
    Graduated: No
    License: Pending

    I know this is typical info for a soon to be graduate (6 weeks!), but I am afraid that they won't look thoroughly enough and will throw my app out as "Not Qualified"

    Fingers Crossed!

    Maybe instead of writing did not graduate, write expected graduation july 2011. And instead of license pending write expected license **2011.

    Also, stress in your cover letter that you went to a BSN program. In my cover letter for the tech postion I wrote "the BSN program has prepared me for this postion through...."

    Good luck!
  6. 0
    Thanks Again!

    I just applied at Union Memorial and I added BSN in my cover letter and wrote yes graduated and date as 08/2011. So heres hoping!
  7. 0
    A recent Reader's Digest article said the HR managers polled admit that they NEVER read cover letters. I was taught to use 3 paragraphs- what you are applying for in the first, what special things you bring to the table in the second, how to contact you in the third. No more than that. No one has time to read long cover letters.
  8. 7
    I worked as a temp in HR for the San Francisco Chronicle for a number of weeks years ago while I was in between jobs. I have absolutely no background in that field- I was a nutritionist. They had me (yes, a temp!) go through all of the resumes and cover letters and look ONLY for qualifications, which they spelled out for me. They weren't interested in cover letters at all.
    I piled all of what I thought they wanted on one side (printed some of these out via email) and stacked the others in a box that went straight to recycling. Then the HR woman went through the small pile of resumes/letters deemed worthy. She did this right in front of me before I went on to the next batch.
    She would pick them up, scan the resume, then scan the letter and make comments. This is what I heard, "Wow, over-confident." "Low self-esteem." "And you want to work here?" "No thanks." "Open salary? Get a spine!" Etc. She then narrowed them down to 2 or 3 and took them away, leaving the rest for the box.
    Now I will tell you absolutely that I actually read these things as I was sorting. Thought I'd get some ideas about what HR looked for. Sure this was a major newspaper, and you could say it was just a special thing, but I don't think so. What I saw again and again, was that this HR manager never took anything back with her that wasn't straightforward and to the point. "Interested in the position. Here are my qualifications. Please call me for interview." No fluff, no 4 paragraphs (in fact one or two was the usual). No groveling, no creativity, nothing but the basics. The why I am the one you want letter.
    So yes, I started using this method. And guess what? I have found over the last 15 years that it never fails. If I'm not getting a call, it is not because of my cover letter but because I don't have something the person of choosing wants.
    To boot, resumes are usually scanned and I can't tell you how many interview I've had where the interviewer hasn't even really looked at it! It's all a game. Good luck.
  9. 0
    Thanks so much, that is very helpful advice! I will def cut the fat!
  10. 0
    Wow. This is awesome information. Thanks a lot for that. My cover letter is one paragraph and to the point. I had a friend tell me that it read too much like an essay so we re-worded most of it to be *straight to the point*. The same way you described it as needing to be to the point with no fluff is what he told me I needed.
  11. 4
    Hello to everyone here on this site. I need some advice or feedback if anyone has the time to look at my cover letter that I just wrote. I feel like it is ok but don't know if it is what a nurse manager or HR is looking for, any thoughts??? Thanx for taking the time.

    Dear XXX:

    I am writing you today because of my sincere interest in becoming a nurse on your Medical-Surgical floor at XXX hospital. After researching many different hospitals in southern Florida your hospital caught my eye because of "XXX".

    I understand what it takes to be a successful nurse on a medical surgical floor and that is being able to prioritize, working with a multitude of patients, and being able to handle stressful situations with a clear mind. I know the importance of following protocol and working well with a team and within the chain of command. I have a sincere compassion for the wellbeing of my patients and a strong desire to not only learn but to eventually serve as a mentor and give back to others. What sets me apart from others is my strong work ethic, ambition, and drive for excellence which is why I believe I would make a valuable addition to your team.

    I want to thank you for taking the time to consider me as a candidate at XXX and I look forward to following up with you next week.

    Respectfully yours,

    XXX
    mollysaunt, LizzieB_RN, cyde, and 1 other like this.


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