How do I get the Interview when I live out of state?

 Cover Letter Tips for applying for out-of-state jobscover letter

Whether looking for work in another state or another town, job-seekers know it is hard to compete against local candidates.  So, what can you do to help get your foot in the door and get an interview?

Have a concise and well-written cover letter that shows how serious you about relocating and that you have a plan for your move. Consider mention the below 5 things in your cover letter to increase your interview chances:

  • Let the employer know that you are willing to relocate with or without relocation assistance. If you must have relocation assistance then do not indicate your willingness to move at your own expense.  If you can finance the move on your own, this could increase your interview chances.  According to SHRM 2014 Benefit Survey only 31% of companies are currently offering a lump-sum assistance for newly hired or transferred employees and 10% offer the assistance of a relocation company, so be prepared for both situations in your decision to move for a new job opportunity.
  • Indicate when you will be available for an interview – If possible, schedule a week for interviews and community tour and indicate in your cover the letter when you will be in town and available for an interview. Mention that you are touring the area, looking at rental property or homes with a realtor to show how serious you are about relocating.  If the dates do not work for the potential employer, ask them to let you know when they will be interviewing and you schedule a trip with a 2 weeks (or your preference) of notice.
  • Provide a start date – Just like changing jobs within the same area, employers know that you need to give at minimum a 2 weeks’ notice to your current employer. Management hires often need a month notice. So, let the recruiter know that you have planned your moved by stating in your cover letter “After receipt of a job offer, I can be available to start in 30 days.”
  • Indicate why the position is worth the move – Of course, there should also be a statement about why you want to work for the potential employer and why you are a perfect candidate for the position. Think about what it is about the position or company culture that will be a positive career move and describe this in your letter.
  • Prove that you can adapt to your new environment – If there is something about the area and community that is prompting your move then state a few reasons in your letter. Mention specifics about the area/community that indices you to relocate.  Do you have family in the area?

While these steps will help you in promoting that your out-of-state / out-of-area status is not a deterrent, don’t forget that a well-written resume is a must.  Ensure your resume has a career summary, job-related keywords, and lists your accomplishments as they relate to the position. Happy job hunting!

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