The Cover Letter Is Dead. Long Live the Cover Email.

I, Robbie Abed now declare the Cover Letter dead. It is a useless waste of a word document. For every time someone uses a cover letter, a kitten will die.

There are two problems with cover letters:

  1. They are usually in a separate word document. Are you just looking for ways to make the recruiters job harder for them? Ever hear of mobile devices? Believe it or not recruiters use them too, and they hate attachments.
  2. They are usually boring as hell & the most repetitive document I have ever seen in my life. Please refer to Shit Every Resume Says post for more details on why I hate them so much.

So does this mean that we should use a résumé and that’s it?

The answer, my friend is the cover email. The key is to write something that’s a cover letter disguised as a normal email. Tell them specifically why you want the job. Tell them why you are qualified. Tell them things that aren’t covered in your résumé.

Here is a Cover Email I used to get my interview at Google a few years ago.


To whom it may concern,

I am applying at Google for two major reasons:

  1. I want to be part of a company that develops consumer technology products that they are passionate about
  2. I have enjoyed 6 years in technology consulting, working for many fortune 100 clients, and it is time for me to go where my heart is

What my résumé says about me:

  • I have experience in implementing ERP solutions as both a Project Manager and as a developer
  • I can code, debug, test and provide solid business recommendations to clients all at the same time
  • I can work in complex environments with difficult clients in sometimes extremely boring cities

What my résumé doesn’t say about me:

  • I love people, and especially connecting people
  • I am a technology news & social media junkie

Attached is my résumé.


It’s clear, simple and uses bullet points. I want them to get an idea of who I am before they look at my résumé.

What if you don’t have their email address? Send it using the text box if possible when applying online. I also think that your first priority is to find out who is going to review the résumé first. Then google them, look on LinkedIn, etc. Send a follow-up note.

PS: Read the only resignation letter template you’ll ever need.