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  • Writer's pictureLinda

Getting to "You've Been Selected": General Q&A Mini-Blog Series Part II:

Welcome to Part II of my Q&A Series mini-blogs on getting to "You've Been Selected." Here are my answers to common questions I get about the type of resume to use and the application process. Just hint, I think you only need one amazing resume!

Should I have a separate resume for the federal government?

I have this all over my website ( I do not believe you should pay more money to make a separate resume for the federal government. In other words, you would have one resume for private industry and one for the federal government. My one exception would be if the experience within each area were in completely different fields. However, if your experience is in the same field then you only need one resume to display your experience. And if the content is done well, you can get that position in either area.

Do I even need a cover letter to apply for a position?

Absolutely! A cover letter is normally a summary of your resume in letter format. Whether you are applying for a federal government or private industry position, a cover letter is very useful. For some positions, it may be mandatory to have one, and others may be optional. It is also important to know that not every level in the vetting process may read your cover letter. But why take the chance to not have a cover letter? It's better to have it than to not have one at all.

If you are going to use a cover letter, I think the best thing you can do is personalize it to the company or organization you are applying to. An HR Manager or hiring official is going to notice a standard cover letter when they see one. You need to make yourself stand out. Show that you know a little bit about the company and this is why you are the best candidate for the position.

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