Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Cover Letter Writing Tips | How to Write Cover Letters

Cover Letter Writing Tips | How to Write Cover Letters
A cover letter usually goes with your resume when you apply for a job. It is mainly written to introduce you and your resume to a potential employer. Your cover letter is your marketing tool which gives a potential employer the first impression about you. So, understanding the function, necessary content, and appropriate format of a cover letter is undoubtedly a valuable skill in today's job market. If your cover letter is well-written, it can help you land an interview or may lead you to new job opportunities. Your cover letter should be specific to the position you are applying for, mentioning your skills and experience as noted in the job advertisement. It should impress the potential employer with information why you are interested in the job and why you are the best candidate for the job. 

It being a critical document, always try to write it in a concise and professional manner. If your aim is to write a winning cover letter, you must take the cover letter writing process seriously. While writing your cover letter, render your maximum effort to make it as special as you are. Make sure your cover letter is reflecting your experience and skill in a concise and professional way. However, while knitting your cover letter for a job at any agencies, or updating your existing cover letter, you should follow the tips given below so that you can stand out from the rest.

Cover Letter Guidelines

Ø  Your cover letter should not exceed more than one page (3–4 paragraphs). Text font of your cover letter should be 12 point. (11 point is also acceptable, but no smaller.) Boarders of your cover letter should not be smaller than one inch.

Ø  Instead of using a generic title or addressing a department, address your cover letter to a specific person. Make sure to spell the name(s) correctly. If situation demands, you can address the letter as advertisement states (i. e. Selection Committee, Human Resource Director, etc.)

Ø  While addressing your cover letter to such a woman whose marital status is unknown to you, you should use Ms.

Ø  Courtesy demands you always write your cover letter in a formal and professional manner—avoid slangs or abbreviations. You should use standard letter block format and must not forget to use a colon after the salutation.

Ø  Always print your cover letter on nice white paper. Make sure you are using the same paper as your resume.

Ø  If possible, have someone proofread your cover letter before dispatching it. Make certain that spelling, sentence structure, and punctuation in your cover letter are accurate.

Ø  In the opening paragraph, always try to mention networking sources (name of person who referred you) while introducing yourself.

Ø  When using a similar cover letter format for multiple jobs, you should change each letter to meet the requirements of the position for which you are applying.

Ø  State how your skills meet the requirements of the position. Also, state clearly why you are the most qualified candidate for the position, but never overstate.

Ø  If you notice that you have missed any point to mention on your resume, you can mention it (i.e. having travelling experience, or having a valid driving license) on your cover letter.

Ø  If possible, mention why you are interested in working for a particular company. In your cover letter you can state company policies, values, or successes that impress you most. If you do so, the potential employer will think that you have done your home work.

Ø  Mention your accomplishments, affiliations, leadership qualities as well as honors/awards you received. These will show you have initiative, and ability to work collaboratively.

Ø  In the closing paragraph, express your firm interest and desire to discuss with them further or hear from them soon. In fine, you should thank them for their time and consideration.

Ø  You can include your contact information either in the heading (same as your resume), or under your typed name (signature).

Ø  Keep all copies you submit with your cover letter so that you can follow up. Above all, while writing cover letters, you have to keep your eyes open so that your cover letters 'get you noticed'.

Popular Posts