A cover letter accompanies your CV or resumes when you apply for a job or send your job application documents. It is your personal and professional introduction to the prospective employer.
In essence, a cover letter highlights your interest in the advertised job while briefly relating your skills and qualifications to the requirements of the prospective employer.
A point often overlooked
Your cover letter is not a summary of your resume. As a matter of fact, it is an invitation to your prospective employer to read your resume.
When writing a cover letter for any position, adhere to the following useful tips in order to make it an attractive piece of writing.
Cover Letter Writing Tips
• Address your cover to the individual by name who has the power to hire you.
• Emphasize the future, not the past. That is to say, what kind of expertise and capabilities you will bring to the prospective employer.
• Change the structure of every sentence to a great extent.
• Edit and rewrite your letter at least three times in order to create a refined version.
• Show your unique personality by adhering to a business-like approach.
• Carefully address any career red flags such as gaps in jobs or education and reasons for a career change.
• Usually, email cover letters do not require headings, dates, and addresses.
• If you have attached a resume, references or transcripts, type “Attachment(s)” after your signature and name.
• Keep a soft copy of your cover letter for future references.
• Always have some friend or family member proofread your letter to identify any typos or misuse of words which might not be caught by a spell checker.
• Use a laser printer on a high DPI.
• Make use of a high-quality paper on standard-size (8.5″ x 11”).
• Choose a white or off-white paper, which must match with the paper of the resume.
• Send your letter in a big envelope so that sheets of cover letter and resume can fit inside without being folded.
7 Cover Letter Don’ts
- Do not over-stuff your cover letter with the pronouns “I,” “me” or “my.”
- Don’t talk badly about your previous employer, coworker, or work environment.
- Don’t use too-informal language or abbreviations.
- Try not to repeat the same idea.
- Keep away from any negativity.
- Never exceed the length of your letter to one page. Writing a long cover letter means that you are trying to hide some negative facts.
- Don’t forget to sign your letters immediately above your typed name.