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What if I do not have a qualification the employer is seeking?

Summary:

Before you start to write a cover letter, you should gather information about yourself, the company, and the job. This page will help you learn what kind of information to find, where to find it, and how and why to use that information to "sell yourself" in a cover letter.

Contributors:Angie Olson, Allen Brizee
Last Edited: 2010-04-25 08:57:51

First of all, do not panic. Then, go ahead and apply.

You may decide to not apply for jobs because you feel you lack an important qualification, whether it is the amount of experience or familiarity with a computer program. But you may be hired for another skill you do have!

You also may not realize that you do have a particular qualification. Remember to look at your past accomplishments and employment history. Chances are, you have a skill similar to what the company desires, you just might call it something different.

Example: You want to apply to a job that asks for retail experience, but you have never worked in retail. But...do you possess the kinds of skills someone with retail experience would have? If you have strong oral communication skills (from teamwork, presentations, etc.), you have at least one skill in common!

Consider this list of transferable skills (skills commonly found in most job descriptions) before deciding you are not qualified:

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