The employer will always wish to know about yourself. Most of it is described in the resume which you first show to the employer. This will include your educational details, work experience, and other skills. Today, most of the employers wish to get the resume through email. In such a case, the cover letter is important. You must write a cover letter in the email body. Thereafter you attach the resume and send it across to the authority. But, these days’ employers have a lot of expectation about writing a cover letter. While applying for a job, along with submitting a resume, you also need to write a cover letter as various companies demand it.
Writing a cover letter, which is a formal declaration letter by the candidate, is the one where the case of candidacy is mentioned. The cover letter is meant to highlight the relevant skills of an applicant, which are compulsory to apply with your resume or CV profile. As the cover letter is a formal document, you have to follow a certain set of guidelines in order to write your cover letter. These guidelines provide you knowledge about what to include in the letter and what not. The format of a cover letter is also drafted under certain guidelines.
Whenever an organisation starts the hiring process, the hiring managers go through a number of cover letters. Of course, the aim is always to find the suitable candidate, they do pay attention and notice that whether or not the cover letters have been formatted correctly. Many times, the ones that don’t follow the usual Letter formats are not considered.
Below we list down the guidelines and the formats required for drafting a cover letter.
Why are cover letters important?
Cover letters form an important part of your job application. The first impression about your profile is a cover letter and then resume or CV. The effective cover letter can give an impression of the person professional history and achievements. You can get hired quickly if there is an urgent requirement. The secret of writing an effective cover letter is through organized contents. This is a complete step by step method to write an effective cover letter.
Design or Style of the Cover Letter
The design of the cover letter is very important to look professional. There are many styles and design that you can implement on your resume or professional CV. But it is important that the CV/resume should match the design and pattern of your cover letter. All the information provided in both cv/resume and cover letter should match. The heading and cover letter pattern should be the same as resume/CV or reference letters. Design an attractive cover letterhead in aligned with the remaining documents. Use professional email address such as ‘john’@gmail.com instead of ‘therock’@gmail.com which reflects an unprofessional email address.
Essentials of writing a cover letter
Your Contact Information
The heading of the cover letter should provide relevant personal details and contact information. The arrangement of name and contact information is according to your preference and style of the resume or CV format.
- Name: Highlight your name in bold and large size
- Address, Email, Phone, Linkedin
- Salutation: The employer details with address
- Base or Body of the Letter
The body is the important part of the cover letter. A well-structured and organized body of a cover letter provides easy to understand over candidacy. The letter is sometimes the selection criteria for employers before even looking at the resume or CV. Try to organize your body into three main paragraphs and a concluding paragraph.
- Salutation: Use proper salutation by using the first name of the hiring manager or using Mr. or Mrs. with Surname. The salutation is very important and providing a random salutation is not suggested.
The introduction of the cover letter should consist of the position that you are applying for. For example, “I am interested in applying for the elementary teaching position at Aspire School San Francisco California.”
Study and analysis about the employer
Read about the employer and if you can provide some details about the understanding of job you are applying. This will provide a good impression of your employment understanding and highlight specific employer application instead of generic mass job email application.
Education and Employment History
After initial descriptions of the employment, the second portion of the body is to describe your education and experience. However, it depends on the person’s profile about the preference of education or experience. Your experience should highlight the overall scenario of your past employment while the education should highlight the achievements and glimpse of your certifications.
Resume or CV relevant professional skills
It is important to write your cover letter in precise and relevant to your professional history and job application. In addition to education and experience, the cover letter should consist of professional skills earned in education and employment history. For example, team management with relevant, quantifiable data such as a managed team of 30+ for conducting a household survey. Quantifiable experience data is a very effective way to showcase a professional career.
Projects and Awards
Projects and awards are also important to part of the cover letter. Big projects and awards will help you the source of your employment and professional relevance. For example, managing million dollar projects will enhance you’re your profile and increase your probability of getting a job.
Skill Transfer Plan
The last section that you can highlight in a cover letter is about the skill transfer and how you can benefit the employer with your relevant skills. This is a very effective method to emphasize your valuable skill transfer to the organization. Skill transfer can be added before the conclusion or part of the conclusion.
Complementary Note and Conclusion
The final section of the cover letter should consist of a concluding paragraph relevant to the employment. A Concluding paragraph should provide an overview of your career and why you need the job.
You can use any sign-offs for your cover letter depending on the relationship with the person. Common sign-offs for the cover letter is
- Best Regards,
- Thank you,
In addition to the sign-offs, you can additionally provide contact details along with the LinkedIn profile. Consider signing the document or use a digital signature to make it more professional. It is best to sign your cover letter or use a digital signature.
- The letter should be in A4, PDF format or attached in the email.
- Utilize as much space in your letter in one single A4 size paper.
- Mention important skills or values that you can provide for the company.
- Write the respective person’s name (first name) for communication.
- Mention about the motivation to join the employer and passion for your work.
Types of Cover Letter
The most common and belonging to the traditional kind of Letter Styles, an application letter is written and sent along with the resume in order to apply for a job. The format of this cover letter remains simple and contains brief information about the candidate.
Letter of Interest:
This type of cover letter focuses more on the inquiry from the candidate. While formatting the letter, the candidate inquests about the various job openings that the organisation offers to the applicant. This is also known as the letter of interest or a prospecting letter.
As the name suggests, a referral letter contains the name of the person, who refers an applicant for a particular job. These cover letters are important because if the referrer is valuable, it immediately catches the interest of a hiring manager. So, if we you know someone in a company, where you also wish to work, it is a good idea to send a referral letter along with the resume.
Value Proposition Letter:
Why should an organisation hire you? What sets you apart from the other candidates who have applied for the job? How can you add value to the working of the company? All these questions answer the value proposition cover letter. It is a short and to-the-point statement that explains that the applicant writes on his or her behalf.
Writing networking letters, you tend to begin the job hunt process. You can ask your colleagues and other people in your network to find a job for you. In short, you seek the advice from people you connect with so that they can refer you to some organization. These types of letters are written to individual colleagues whom you personally know or to the people under your social media circle. Linkedin is a good way to connect with people and spread your networking letter.
Inclusion in a Letter – Industry Specific
How to customize a cover letter for each industry?
Sometimes you may wish to apply in many jobs at the same time. Does the covering letter is for a specific industry? Don’t worry, as there are ways through which you can customize your cover letter. Following are the ways:
- Customize by experience– You might have experience working in the different field, but it is not always necessary to state everything in the cover letter. Just mention the experience that applies to this job.
- Customize your skill- The employer will always look for the skill that you possess. Just mention the skill that you pose based on the field and the position. For example, if you are going to apply for a sales job, it is important to mention the term, ‘excellent communication skill.’
Like the above examples, you can customize the letter as per the industry and job requirement. Some of the organization may wish to see very complex written cover-letter. Some of the companies would prefer very simple and easy English while writing the cover letter. You must research and find out what exactly they want. Accordingly, you can proceed.
If you want your letter designed by a professional. Kindly contact us for more information. We support you to write, design and publish your cover-letter. The designs are elegant and give you a better response from the employers. Our designs have yielded around 2 times of the responses than a normal letter. Contact us at Vistaresume