A Job Seeker on Vacation

Just when I thought I had seen it all, a job seeker threw a new curve.  I received a resume that had this cover letter:

Dear Recruiter:

I'm interested in <job title>. I'm confident I'd be a good match for <job title> position coupled with my <industry> background. So, I've attached a copy of my resume for your review and further consideration.

I've provided additional information to further assist you in consideration for <job title> position. I'm available IMMEDIATELY and would appreciate the opportunity to meet with you for a personal interview. I'm currently on vacation in <vacation destination> so a phone interview would be ideal at this time.

Salary is negotiable, however is primarily driven by the high cost of living in the <metro> area, therefore request an annually comp. package in the range of $##K – ###K.

In the interim, I thank you for your attention, consideration, and anticipated response.

With kind regards, I am,

There are a number of mistakes in this cover letter.  The grammar needs work.  I deleted the personal identifying information, so it may not be as obvious to you as it was to me.  The job seeker is not in the marketing field, so we'll use this as an example.  The first sentence is structured like this: “I'm interested in Marketing Manager.”  All it would need is a couple more words to read much better:  “I'm interested in a Marketing Manager position.” 

Although the grammar is a problem, it's not the reason I decided to write about this cover letter.  The second paragraph is what caught my eye.  In one sentences, the job seeker emphasizes their “IMMEDIATE” availability for an interview.  Then in the next sentence, they explain that they are actually unavailable and discuss where they are on vacation. 

I'm not sure if I've ever read a cover letter that talked about a job seeker's vacation before.  This is information that does nothing to help sell the candidate.  There is no reason to provide this. 

The situation is made even worse with the statement regarding the immediate availability.  The job seeker makes a statement and then in the next statement, admits that the claim is actually a lie. Don't lie in your cover letter or resume.  It doesn't make a positive impression.

The rest of the cover letter doesn't help.  I don't think salary information should be in a cover letter (unless you are responding to an ad that specifically requests it).  If you decide to include your salary, don't try to justify it.  Your background should demonstrate why this salary is appropriate for you.  By justifying the salary with a statement of the high cost of living, the job seeker sounds apologetic and unsure they are worth this salary.

This job seeker is completely outside my firm's recruiting specialty, so there is no way I would pursue them.  If they were in one of the niches we work, I would probably delete the resume based on the cover letter.  The cover is bad enough that I would be concerned about the risk to a client relationship by presenting someone like this.