Imagine receiving getting something without any notification. You would be surprised and little hesitant to open it, as it might have something unwanted. Similarly a cover letter is a must when you are sending your resume, the hiring managers do not so much time to go through all the resumes in depth. At times the cover letter is sufficient enough for the employer to call you for the interview.
Be it any position you plan to apply for you would need to write an impressive cover letter or letter of application. The main aim of the cover letter is to introduce you, purpose for writing, thereby highlighting your key experiences or skills, and requests opportunity to meet personally with the potential employer.
Remember a cover letter represents the face of your resume and it is the first touch point with you and your skills. So you must take great care to write an impressive and effective cover letter. The cover letter not only tells of your accomplishments but also tells how effective your Communication skills are.
You should vary the content, format, and tone for application according to your profile and personality. Once you have framed the outline it becomes equally important to ask someone who has experience in hiring in your field to critique your letter and offer suggestions for betterment.
Some of the key points that you must keep in your mind when drafting the cover letter –
- You must limit your cover letter to a single page, employer does not want to read your life history. He is only interested in knowing how beneficial you would be for the organization.
- You must first understand the employer’s needs and then match your skills accordingly. The requirement of the employer and your skills must be matched in such a way that it appeals the employer’s self-interest.
- Try to customize your cover letter to each job opportunity. Also highlight your knowledge of the organization you are applying for, if possible.
- You must use a mature and clear writing style; with simple and easy sentences; avoid complex sentences and jargon.
- Try to use some action verbs and the active voice.
- You must convey confidence, optimism, and enthusiasm in your cover letter together with respect and professionalism.
- Do not hard-sell yourself; avoid gimmicks, and do not unorthodox the cover letters.
- Lastly arrange your points in a logical sequence; and organize each paragraph around a main point.
A great cover letter needs good formatting some of the tips to format a cover letter are,
- Use a word processor, type each letter individually.
- Use good quality bond paper.
- Address each employer by name and title, to show professionalism.
- Your letter should be grammatically correct, properly punctuated, and perfectly spelled.
- You cover letter should be clean and free of errors.
- Use conventional business correspondence form.
- Remember to proofread it carefully.