What is a cover letter?
A cover letter is a one-page document that you submit as part of your job application alongside your Resume.
Its goal is to introduce you and briefly summarize your professional background. It should be from 250 to 400 words long. Not too long to bore the recruiter and not too short not to summarize your work experience properly.
A good cover letter can grab the HR manager’s eyes and get them to read your resume instantly.
A bad one, on the other hand, might mean that your application is going directly to the paper shredder.
So, to make sure this doesn’t happen, it’s essential to know how to write a convincing letter that catches HR’s eyes.
Why cover letter is important?
When applying for an open position in an organisation, employers require you to fill out a resume and submit it as part of the application process. Some companies also require you to send a cover letter with your resume to explain why you are qualified for a position.
While it may be optional for some positions, it is usually a good idea to include one in any application you submit.
DOWNLOAD: Set up your cover letter with this tested sample cover letter.
Keep in mind, though, that it is a supplement to your resume, not a replacement. Meaning, you don’t just repeat whatever is mentioned in your resume.
If you’re writing a cover letter for the first time, writing all this might seem pretty tough. After all, you’re probably not a professional writer.
The thing is, though, you don’t need to be creative, or even any good at writing. All you have to do is follow a tried-and-tested format:
- Header – Input contact information
- Greeting the hiring manager
- Opening paragraph – Grab the reader’s attention with 2-3 of your top achievements
- Second paragraph – Explain why you’re the perfect candidate for the job
- Third paragraph – Explain why you’re a good match for the company
- Formal closing
Customizing your resume is key to landing a great interview
Don’t forget to customize your resume alongside. The majority of the hiring manager (approx 61%) consider a customized resume the No. 1 tactic for applicants trying to boost their chance of getting a job. The others include:
Wrapping it up
Having strong cover letter content is a great way to introduce yourself to potential employers, but if you really want to impress them, your resume should be just as thorough and work in tandem with your cover letter. Make sure you can answer “yes” to the questions on the above checklist.
Don’t forget to watch the video below to know how to write a cover letter format and to ensure that it is effective, avoid these missteps!