Qualifying for a job takes experience in that specific field. However, applying for an entry-level position may not require you to possess necessary skills that you can learn on the job. If you are interested in starting as an entry-level administrative assistant directly after graduating from a course of study or you are changing careers and have no experience in that job, use your cover letter to explain how you qualify for an interview and why you are the best person for the job.
Write your resume before you formulate a cover letter. Focus on duties that you have performed in the past, such as organising and prioritising tasks, that are related to those of the job description for the entry-level administrative assistant.
Address your cover letter to the person who will be reading it. If the name isn't in the job announcement, call the company and ask.
Start your cover letter with a relevant and catchy introduction, such as "Have you ever worked toward a goal that you were eager to accomplish? Being an administrative assistant is so important to me that I would like to learn the job from the entry level."
Highlight the job duties that you have performed in other jobs that are similar to those for an administrative assistant trainee. Just because you have no experience in that position doesn't mean that you are not qualified. Do not simply repeat the information from your resume, but expand on your relevant experience and education.
Discuss specific jobs you held that required you to perform administrative duties, such as scheduling appointments, making travel arrangements and planning events. Stress any administrative or secretarial training that you have completed.
Explain where you learnt your computer and technical skills, and tell the employer if you have handled confidential and sensitive information for a prior boss.
Emphasise your professionalism by submitting a brief cover letter with no errors, and show your communication skills by clearly explaining why you will excel in the job. Your cover letter should explain how you will benefit the company by understanding the importance of an entry-level administrative assistant position and giving details on how you will fill the need.
- Education-Portal: Duties of an Administrative Assistant
- United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics: Secretaries and Administrative Assistants
- The Effective Admin; Complement Your Resume With a Compelling Cover Letter; Diane Domeyer; 2011
- GBL Careers; Cover Letter Basics: 5 Steps to a Top-Notch Letter; September 2010