Every successful cover letter is drafted around a template that is proven to be effective. This one-page document with a maximum of 300 words is submitted along with your resume when applying for a job.
Your cover letter must aim to summarize your professional background and introduce you to your prospective employer. Convincing cover letter writing generates interest in the HR personnel and compels them to read your resume in detail.
Structure of a covering letter
When you set out to writing a cover letter, be conscious that this document is not meant to replace your CV but, to add value to it. Refer to the below-mentioned format to ensure you cover all the relevant aspects:
- The header comprises of your name and all relevant contact details
- Greet the hiring manager and include their credentials
- Use the opening paragraph to highlight your top professional achievements and grab the reader’s attention
- In the second paragraph, which is the main body of content, elaborate on why you consider yourself a perfect fit for the job opening
- The last paragraph should focus on you being a suitable match for the organization
- Formally close the letter by extending necessary courtesies and subsequently sign off
The first thing you tackle when learning how to write a cover letter is the header. A professional header must include your full name, functional contact number, and an active personal e-mail address that preferably has a formal tone.
Also, mention the date, hiring manager’s name with their designation, name of the company to which you are applying, and its complete address. What you can optionally include is your professional title, home address, LinkedIn, and Skype IDs.
If you have been debating over how to make a cover letter that seals the deal, you get the necessary answers here. Essential points to keep in mind for the salutation or greeting include:
- Directly address the hiring manager for whom the letter is intended to make it more personal
- Always prefix ‘Dear’
- When the company culture is a casual one, you can address the manager by their first name
- If applying for a more corporate position, stick to the addressee’s last name
- Should you not be aware of the hiring manager’s name, address them by their designation
- Avoid ‘sir,’ ‘madam’ and ‘to whomsoever it may concern’
Your intent while writing a cover letter should be to make the hiring manager read further instead of losing interest. An attractive opening paragraph is an introduction which compels the reader to proceed and keeps them engrossed.
Begin with valuable highlights from your professional journey, sound enthusiastic, and indirectly convince the hiring personnel to look no further. An effective strategy to this effect works in your favor since you are projecting to the concerned authority that you have the qualities they need for the job.
This section of cover letter writing must stress on you being the ideal candidate for the vacant position. Here you have to prove that you tick all the boxes listed for the role on offer.
Start by relaying that you are an expert in the same field and have relevant experience to back your claim. Go on to outline how your prior practical experiences will be an asset to your future employer and enable you to make sound decisions.
In the third paragraph, you must draw your potential employer’s attention to the fact that you connect with their company. An organization needs to believe that you find it rewarding to work for them because it is only then that you will give off your best.
Via your covering note, you need to convince the person making the hiring decision that you are keen on this job from a long-term perspective. Display your eagerness in an upcoming project, explain why it interests you and how you can utilize your knowledge and experience to make the project a success.
Call to action
The ending is a decisive part as it needs to keep up the momentum of what you have built over the earlier sections. Strengthen the hiring manager’s belief in your capabilities and excite them to go through your resume without sounding desperate.
Communicate through this paragraph that you look forward to meeting the concerned official in-person to further your discussions. Impress on them how your skill sets will benefit your prospective employer and help fulfill their goals.
Tips on how to write a cover letter suggest you sign off with ‘sincerely’ and subsequently add your signature and full name. Alternative formal closures include ‘kind regards,’ ‘respectfully yours,’ or ‘thanking you.’ You may also choose to repeat your contact details here.
Adding an impressive professional achievement under postscript, even if it is not related to the relevant opening, acts as a teaser. You may further state your willingness to provide corresponding details should the hiring manager be interested in this feat of yours.
- Before commencing this exercise, do research on the job opening, the company and name of the hiring authority
- Paste striking highlights of your covering letter in the body of the mail you send the recruiter with your resume and cover note attached
- Format the letter correctly, so it is visually appealing
- Every job application deserves a unique cover letter
- Incorporate terminologies that help build a connect
- Watch out for typographical mistakes and overusing the ‘I’ word
- Avoid funny one-liners as it does not reflect maturity
- Select an appropriate tone of voice and stick to it
- Stay clear of stale phrases that may end up annoying the reader
- Do not include inputs that are irrelevant to the job opening
- Ensure your covering note leads to an equally exciting resume
- Keep all content factual and refrain from incorporating fluff
When a job application demands a cover letter, utilize this opportunity to illustrate your strengths, and give the potential employer a glimpse of your professional attributes.