Top 10 Cover Letter Mistakes

Updated April 27, 2018

Cover letters are a mandatory part of every job application set.

A well-written and engaging cover letter is sometimes enough on its own to impress the recruiter and earn an interview.

Most candidates write cover letters just as the last minute formality and consequently come up with thoughtless. Similarly, poorly written cover letters automatically finish the job opportunity for the applicant.

Therefore, it is essential to analyze common mistakes and avoid the same when writing a cover letter.

This article discusses ten cover letter mistakes that come with a heavy price. Look out for these carefully to grab the attention of employer and land successfully into the job market!

The following are ten most common cover letter mistakes usually candidates make along with a brief discussion on how to avoid each one of them:


Top 10 Cover Letter Mistakes

1. Unimpressive start

Letter with a non-engaging, unimpressive start is doomed to die after a few- seconds glance! The starting must not be annoying, make it unique and employer specific. Mention 2-3 of your key attributes related to the job.

2. Re-phrasing the resume

A cover letter must not just mention your skills and qualifications because your resume is already doing that. The cover letter is instead a personalized expression of your strengths in a descriptive form. In fact, a cover letter focuses on future, i.e., what would you bring to the prospective company.

3. Being under confident about your potential

Sounding under confident about your potential, expertise, and skills is a big mistake. Whenever potential is being mentioned, take a firm, outgoing tone to reflect confidence.

4. Typos and grammatical errors

A cover letter with typos and misspelled words indicate lack of concentration and carelessness, two qualities which no employer wants in a potential candidate. Also, sentence structure, grammatical and punctuation errors damage the influence of your resume.

5. Ignoring qualifications

One of the most significant errors is lack of relevance. It is imperative to relate your skills and expertise to the employer’s requirements; otherwise, the letter will not appeal the employer.

6. Failure to support your competency claims with a success story

A cover letter full of claims regarding specific skills is worthless until these claims are supported with at least one instance of worth mentioning accomplishment.

7. Unnecessary details

The employers only remain engaged as long as the covering letter is job relevant. Do not include any details the employer doesn’t need to know in order to determine your candidacy. This mistake can be fatal.

8. Making salary demands

The most prominent failure in a cover letter is to write and talk about salary. A cover letter is definitely not the right platform to discuss your salary expectations. Remember, it is just a way to catch the attention of the employer.

9. Forgetting to include contact details

Even if your resume is attached, it is a big mistake to miss out your contact information in the cover letter. Your contact numbers and email address should be mentioned in the header or in the last paragraph of the letter.

10. Non-persuasive ending

Abrupt, non-persuasive conclusions are another big mistake. The ending paragraph is an excellent opportunity to show enthusiasm and suggests an interview call, make use of it smartly!

About the Author

Sam Mogul, MBA (ITM & HR), is a passionate career expert with 15 years of experience in writing and reviewing resumes, cover letters, and career-related content. He founded CoverLettersAndResume in 2011 intending to help job seekers in their job search journey. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to Contact Us. Or visit our About Us page.

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