Tips for Applicants
Few things make us as happy as getting lots of strong applications for position openings we post. While it makes the work of choosing hires more difficult, it also means we're probably making a good choice no matter which strong application we choose.
If you want your application to be in the strong-applicant group -- we certainly do, and we hope you do too! -- here are a few hints for catching our eyes. These are written specifically about us at Caldwell-Clark, but you may find them to be useful with most any potential employer:
- Address your cover letter to a specific person. In other words, do not address your cover letter "To Whom It May Concern." Your letter is going to a real and specific person, and should be addressed as such. (Our names are Ben and Aimee, so please address your letter to at least one of us.) If you are applying to a position where you do not know the name of the specific contact, address your letter to the specific organization. Hopefully, you're not just changing the addressee each time you send a cover letter; you should...
- ...Write a specific cover letter for each employer or position to which you are applying. Your resume should stay the same; you have a skill set and professional experience that does not change based on the job to which you apply. Your cover letter, on the other hand, is your chance to show that you have done your homework about the specific position/supervisor/agency, and have reason to believe that your skills and experiences are a good fit that specifically match with what they're looking for. Make those connections in your cover letter.
- If you are going to list a goal or objective on your resume, have it be specific. Objectives that are essentially "to get a job" or "to use my skills and abilities to help clients" are wasted space -- they do not tell us anything meaningful about you, and we want to know what sets you apart from other therapists. What goals do you have for yourself that other applicants do not?
- Check your grammar and spelling carefully, especially with names. Well-written applications get much more attention than those with grammar or spelling errors. We see a surprising number of applications with basic errors in these areas.
- When a job posting requests specific documentation other than a resume, such as a list of references, proof of intern registration, or the like, do not make the employer ask for it again. Send everything that has been requested when you first apply. You may be surprised how much of a difference this can make. From our perspective, an intern who reads carefully and follows directions well in the application process is more likely to listen carefully and follow directions well in supervision -- and that is a very important skill set.
We want you to do well in your application process, whether with us or with any other prospective employers. We hope you find these tips useful in preparing your application packet. As a reminder, you can always find current Caldwell-Clark job openings here, and we typically post them on AAMFT and CAMFT job boards as well.