Career Growth

Job seekers are using ChatGPT to save time on the most annoying part of an application: the cover letter



ChatGPT could be coming for your job, or it could help ease your workload.

Some people are using it to secure those jobs in the first place by having OpenAI's chatbot write their cover letters. 

As the bot's influence quickly began to spread across social media, many job hunters realized that the normally time-consuming process of searching for and applying for, jobs could be made a lot shorter with the help of ChatGPT.

Since the chatbot first launched in November, garnering over 1 million users, people excitedly used it for business advice and essay writing — and now, cover letters are in the mix.

As one Twitter user put it, she is "extremely impressed/horrified (shooketh?) at how well ChatGPT rendered a cover letter template for an academic job" after she asked the bot to write a cover letter for an assistant professor position.

And she's not alone. Many other users have taken to social media to comment on the benefits the chatbot has when it comes to the job process — particularly because it helps them avoid writing a cover letter, a usually dreaded element of job applications.

One Twitter user called the new development a "game changer," and another said that if people "hate to write cover letters" as much as he does, applicants can "copy-paste the job description and a summary of your experiences to #ChatGPT , ask it to write a cover letter and see the magic: a customized cover letter for that specific job vacancy in seconds."

A different user called cover letters "such a waste of time. I'm having chatbot write any I need in the future," he wrote. 

Over on TikTok, potential applicants are guiding fellow jobseekers to put full job descriptions into the chatbot and asking ChatGPT to write a cover letter based on those needs.

"The real key with this tool, with ChatGPT, is to refine it," one user advises, saying that applicants should have the chatbot keep editing letters with personal experience and adjusting for tone.

Chatter around ChatGPT cover letters has surfaced lots of debate on the topic

The debate around whether cover letters should be nixed altogether because they could introduce more room for bias aside, using cover letters written by ChatGPT to secure a new job is also controversial.

Alison Green, who created the website Ask a Manager, told Money that people should think carefully before asking a chatbot to write part of their job application — especially depending on the field of work.

"If you submit a sample of your writing for a writing-heavy job and you didn't write it — I mean, you're just setting yourself up for disaster," Green said.

"The question is less about the ethics and more about whether it's smart. And I would say no, it's really dumb," Green added. What makes a cover letter stand out is largely personal anecdotes and experiences the applicant can bring — and a robot can't make those things up.

The chatbot itself seems to agree. When Insider asked how good it is at writing cover letters, ChatGPT said: "As a language model, I can assist you in writing a cover letter by providing suggestions and guidance on content, language, and tone, but I cannot claim to have personal experiences or emotions to include in a cover letter. The quality of the cover letter ultimately depends on the information you provide and how well it is tailored to the specific job and company you are applying for." 

The progression of ChatGPT, and how employers and prospective employees will use it, remains uncertain. But as Insider has previously reported, workers are already using the bot to make their current jobs just a bit easier. Rather than Googling, workers are using the bot to ask simple questions, and it's also helpful with creating a daily work schedule and managing tasks.

"It's absolutely true that AI applications like ChatGPT can very much improve workers' lives," Mark Muro, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institute who has researched the impact of AI on the workforce, told Insider.