job seeker getting help with cover letterWest Michigan Works! hosts free workshops for job seekers looking to polish their skills and techniques, including a cover letter writing workshop for job seekers discover their professional voice.

According to a survey, 86% of hiring managers found cover letters to be valuable when reviewing candidates’ job applications. A cover letter is a one-page, personable document written to give hiring managers detailed background into your work history, skills and experiences.

West Michigan Works! Franklin service center in Kent County offers a free bi-monthly cover letter writing workshop for job seekers at all levels that help with formatting, layout and writing basics.

“Many job seekers that come have never written a cover letter before,” says Clementina Ingram, Talent Development Instructor at the Franklin service center. “Or if they have, they’re coming to learn how to write a more effective one.”

Ingram, who runs the workshop along with Talent Development Instructor, Elizabeth McMurray, welcomes job seekers to come learn about writing a cover letter that makes them standout to potential employers.

“You’re using your cover letter as a way to market yourself and to get an interview,” says McMurray. “Your resume says a little bit about your skills but your cover letter can go more in depth.”

The workshop also offers individual consultation to job seekers looking for suggestions and tips on what they have written. If you are a job seekers planning to attend the workshop, you can expect to leave the hour-long session understanding that your cover letter should complement your resume.

“People struggle with writing cover letters because they think it has to be something grand, but it really doesn’t have to be,” says McMurray. “We felt that having an individual workshop to strictly go over cover letters would be helpful to job seekers who feel that way.”

West Michigan Works! has other events and workshops for job seekers looking to sharpen their skills, meet hiring employers or take their next step toward a new career. Events and workshops can be found by county at