A solid cover letter can help a job candidate stand out from the crowd. However, a poorly written cover letter can cost a job candidate the job. Below are five secrets to writing a great cover letter that will get noticed among thousands of job applicants.
When you apply for a job, many times the employer will ask for a cover letter. What is a cover letter? This is a common question many new job hunters ask. A cover letter is a short, one-page letter that introduces you, highlights your education and a few of your experiences or skills, and requests an opportunity to meet personally with the potential employer.
Since a cover letter is often your first real introduction to an employer, it is important to make a good first impression. Be sure to take great care when writing your cover letter. You want it to be an impressive and effective letter. This letter will tell an employer about your accomplishments, but it will also reveal how effectively you can communicate.
1. Write a custom cover letter
This is one of the most important tips for writing cover letters. Depending on the types of jobs you apply to, you may have to change your cover letter considerably to target each job. Even jobs with the same title often have different responsibilities. Make it a point to hone in on the key qualifications each company is looking for and mention how your skills fit the job requirement in your cover letter.
2. Use a generic salutation
In some cases, you may not know who to address your cover letter to. When this happens, do a little bit of research to determine the name of the hiring manager or HR representative who is recruiting for the position. Avoid using the generic “To Whom it May Concern” or “Dear Hiring Manager” greeting that so many people use. If you are unable to find out the name of the person you are supposed to address, don’t address anyone. Instead, skip right to the body of your cover letter.
3. Keep it short
Aim for half a page at most when writing cover letters. Make your point right away, mention a few accomplishments, and state why you would be a good fit for the position you are applying to. Don’t think of a cover letter as an extension of your resumé. The cover letter should contain just enough information to grab the hiring manager’s attention.
4. Mention your accomplishments
If you want to impress the hiring manager, talk about the qualities that make you a great candidate in your cover letter. Mention a few of your most notable accomplishments, and don’t be afraid to brag about your achievements. Determine what you excel at and why an employer should hire you over other candidates and include it in your cover letter.
5. End strong
End your cover letter by explaining how your qualifications and experience make you a great fit for the job. Keep it short and to the point. One closing sentence should be enough to get your point across and make you a memorable candidate for the job.