A cover letter is a great way to introduce yourself and explain why you’re the best candidate for a job. Whether hiring managers read them or not, they can help you stand out from other applicants. So if you want to take your career search to the next level, consider writing a killer cover letter.
|Cover letters are still relevant and important in the job search process.
|A strong cover letter can help compensate for a weak resume.
|Including a cover letter depends on the employer’s preference and the job posting.
|A well-crafted cover letter should be one page long, with 3-4 paragraphs.
|Tailoring your cover letter to the specific job and company is important.
Do Cover Letters Matter?
As you can see, cover letters are a great way to differentiate yourself from the pack and get your foot in the door. Just make sure your cover letter doesn’t get lost in the shuffle.
To stand out and land interviews your resume has to be top-notch. You must have strong skills and experiences that match what they’re looking for because if they don’t like what they see on paper, they won’t even consider interviewing you in person.*
The best way to do this? Use our free resume builder tool! It’ll help make sure everything’s organized properly so hiring managers will know that you’re serious about getting work done (which is probably why all those other applicants overlooked it).
While there’s no guarantee that a cover letter will always help you land the job, it can definitely increase your chances of getting noticed by hiring managers. For more tips on writing effective cover letters, check out our article on how cover letters help.
Can Cover Letters Help Me Land An Interview?
The short answer: yes, cover letters can help you land interviews.
In general, cover letters are a helpful tool for struggling job seekers to stand out from the crowd and get their resumes to read.
However, if you’re already in the running for an interview (perhaps because of your extensive experience or connections), then sending a cover letter along with your resume may not be necessary.
However, even if it wasn’t required by my dream employer, I still wanted to send one anyway not just because I hoped it would help me land an interview but also because I wanted to stand out as someone willing to put in extra effort on behalf of their potential employer (and myself).
How Do I Write A Good Cover Letter?
This may seem obvious, but the best way to write a good cover letter is by writing it for that specific job.
- Be specific about what you can bring to the role and why you’re suited for it.
- Be concise it should be no longer than one page, maximum.
- Make sure it’s positive and personal; mention something interesting about yourself or your skills that relates to the job in question.
- Use correct grammar and spelling throughout (or have someone else look over it before sending it), which will show that you take pride in everything you do and make an effort to be professional at all times.
Some employers may not even read your cover letter, but that doesn’t mean you should skip it altogether. A well-crafted cover letter can still make a big impact on the ones who do read it. Learn more about the importance of cover letters in our article on whether a cover letter matters.
What Is The Difference Between A Resume And A Cover Letter?
The difference between a resume and a cover letter isn’t very complicated. A resume is your job application itself, while a cover letter is just an introductory note to the hiring manager or other person responsible for hiring you.
You may have heard the term “cv,” which stands for curriculum vitae. That’s just another word for “resume.” But, since many people in the U.S. go by this now-dated British term instead of “resume,” we’ll use it from here forward!
A cover letter introduces who you are and why you’re interested in working at their company (if there’s not already enough context for that in your resume). It also outlines what skills, abilities, experience, and qualifications make you qualified for the position they’re looking to fill.
Ideally, when someone reads it they feel like: “Oh yeah! This person would be great at this job!” Or maybe even better: “This person has been doing exactly what we need to be done at our company all along but nobody noticed until now!”
How Can I Make My Cover Letter Stand Out From Other Candidates?
A cover letter is a good opportunity to sell yourself and your skills. While you shouldn’t ramble on about your life story or list every job you’ve ever held, it’s important to be specific in what you want and how you can help the company.
It’s also helpful to add in a personal touch, if possible, such as mentioning something specific about their business that caught your eye or offering a solution based on prior experience with similar problems at other companies.
If possible, keep the opening paragraph short: “I am writing because I’m interested in working for [company name].” This makes it easier for the reader (often HR) to get through all of them quickly.
If there are multiple positions available within one company, it may be worth mentioning this early on so they know which position(s) they’re applying for if there’s only one position mentioned here then they’ll naturally assume this is what you’re applying for anyway!
If there are multiple positions mentioned here then make sure that each one fits into what interests/excites them most.”
What Is The Difference Between A CV And A Resume?
A CV is a more detailed document than a resume. It’s not necessarily longer, but it gives more information about you. This might include your academic achievements, awards and honors, publications, employment history (including internships), and any other notable activities or accomplishments you’ve had since high school or college.
A CV can also be used by someone who has advanced degrees or is applying for academic positions in addition to non-academic jobs (such as teaching). If you feel like your skills are especially impressive and relevant, a CV may be the way to go!
A resume focuses on your experience in paid work (or volunteering) and any education that would help you do that job better but CVs often include volunteer work as well as non-paid employment.
Since both documents should reflect what makes their subject good at what they do best and both formats have the same basic design: listing contact information first followed by educational background and then work history it’s not surprising there’s confusion about which one should go where.
A great cover letter can set you apart from other candidates and help you get one step closer to your dream job. Need help getting started? Check out our guide on how a cover letter can help you get your desired job for some tips and tricks.
Who Should I Address My Cover Letter To?
While your cover letter may be read by someone other than the hiring manager, it’s best to address your letter to that person. The job description should tell you who will be reading your resume (and therefore reading your cover letter). This could be a recruiter or HR rep, but it’s most likely going to be the actual hiring manager.
If there is no information about who will be making the final decision on whom they hire, then you can assume they’ll both look over all of those applying for this position.
If this is the case, then use “Dear Hiring Manager” in your greeting paragraph instead of trying to guess which one might read what you’ve written; addressing them individually may come across as presumptuous and could get you overlooked altogether if there are multiple decision-makers involved in hiring for this position!
How Long Should My Cover Letter Be?
1-2 pages, 3-4 paragraphs and 3-4 sentences per paragraph is the norm. For each job you are applying for, include 1-2 sentences in the cover letter.
In addition to the contact information, address your cover letter to a specific person and include any relevant details about how you found out about them or their company. Include a cover letter template (see example below) so that you have something to use as a reference point during your writing process.
An effective cover letter can make a huge difference in your job search. Not sure how to write one? Our article on how an effective cover letter can affect your chances of getting a job breaks down what employers are looking for and how you can stand out from the competition.
Will Hiring Managers Read My Cover Letter If It’s Attached To My Resume?
A good question! Many hiring managers will indeed open your resume first and then decide whether they want to read the attached cover letter. If you don’t attach a cover letter, it’s unlikely it will be read.
On the other hand, if you do attach a cover letter, it’s much more likely that hiring managers will take a look at what you’ve written and if they see something interesting or helpful for their company, there’s a good chance they’ll consider contacting you about your application.
But what if I don’t have time to write an original cover letter? What should I do then?
Here are some tips:
Look at job postings from companies where you’d like to work; look at other people’s applications in those companies; identify common themes in those applications (what skills appear most often? What projects were cited?). Model your application after these successful ones.
Use language from the job posting as inspiration for what skills/experience/achievements might be relevant for this role or company. You don’t need to copy directly from the posting; just think about what kind of experience would be useful here based on what was said in it.
Wondering how to structure your cover letter? Our article on how a cover letter should be written provides a step-by-step guide to crafting a compelling introduction, body, and conclusion that will leave a lasting impression on potential employers.
We hope that we’ve been able to answer some of those questions for you and put a little spark into the process of writing your cover letter. We know how important it is for you to land your dream job, so if we can help at all, please don’t hesitate to reach out!
Why Cover Letters are Important: Tips and advice – This article provides insights into why cover letters are still relevant and important in the job search process, along with tips on how to write a great one.
How to Write a Cover Letter with No Experience – If you’re new to the job market or changing careers, this guide offers practical advice on crafting a cover letter that showcases your skills and potential.
Do I Need a Cover Letter? – This article explores the pros and cons of including a cover letter with your job application, along with tips on how to decide whether or not it’s necessary.
Q: What should be included in a cover letter?
A: A cover letter should include a brief introduction, why you’re interested in the position, how your skills and experience make you a good fit for the job, and a strong closing statement.
Q: Can a cover letter make up for a weak resume?
A: While a strong cover letter can help compensate for a weak resume, it’s still important to have a well-crafted resume that showcases your qualifications and experience.
Q: Should I always include a cover letter with my job application?
A: It depends on the employer’s preference and the job posting. If the job posting specifically requests a cover letter, it’s best to include one. If not, it’s still a good idea to consider sending one to make a good impression.
Q: How long should a cover letter be?
A: A cover letter should typically be one page long, with 3-4 paragraphs that concisely convey your skills and experience.
Q: Can I use the same cover letter for multiple job applications?
A: It’s not recommended to use the exact same cover letter for multiple job applications. It’s important to tailor your cover letter to the specific job and company you’re applying to, highlighting how your skills and experience align with their needs.
Costantine Edward is a digital marketing expert, freelance writer, and entrepreneur who helps people attain financial freedom. I’ve been working in marketing since I was 18 years old and have managed to build a successful career doing what I love.