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I see this mistake all the time! Applicants think that employers won’t notice if they just copy and paste bullets from their resume into their cover letter. Guess what? It looks lazy!

But how can you figure out which information belongs in the resume versus the cover letter?

The resume is where you want to showcase quantitative details, measurable outcomes, impressive clients, and company names. Think small bits of information that stand out.

The cover letter is where you can expand on 2-3 qualitative accomplishments. You have more space and flexibility there, so you can give more context about where and how the accomplishment took place.

Ideally, you’ll want to choose 2-3 examples of wins that directly relate to the job you’re targeting. Use the cover letter to go a bit more in depth about each of these, to show the employer how they directly relate to the role you’re applying to.

So when deciding where and how to list a win.

  • Can you describe it in less than two lines? If so, add it to the resume.
  • Does it require a backstory/explanation to do it justice? If so, include it in your cover letter.
Andrea Gerson
Post by Andrea Gerson
November 11, 2021
Andrea Gerson is a social worker, career coach and workforce technology founder. Over the past 15 years, she's crafted impactful resumes for over 7,500 clients – many of who have gotten hired at organizations like Google, Apple, and the U.N. She's partnered with dozens of non-profit workforce agencies to lead staff trainings on topics like job search strategies, interview preparation and navigating workplace conflict. Andrea brings a strengths-based, client-centered perspective, and her work is an extension of her commitment to addressing the opportunity gap.