Cover Letters Are Your First Impression - How to Write a Great Job Application Cover Letter

Your cover letter may be the first impression you make on a potential employer. Do you think your letter is perfect? Learn how to write a great job application cover letter. Writing an impressive cover letter is essential when applying for a job, especially in the corporate world. A great job application cover letter is short, professional-looking, error-free and describes why you are the person they are looking for.


Targeted Cover Letter


When you apply for a job, always write a letter specifically for that job. Using a canned or generic letter will practically ensure that your application will end up in the wastebasket. The people who work in the Human Resources departments can spot a generic letter right away. They hate that type of letter because it shows that the person is not putting any real effort into the job application process. Likewise, a poorly written cover letter will nip your chances in the bud since no one will take you seriously if your letter is full of grammatical mistakes, incorrect punctuation and typographical errors.


How to Write a Great Cover Letter


“Dear Ms. Wilson” is much better than “To Whom It May Concern” or “Dear Sir/Madam,” so find out the name of the person to whom the letter should be addressed. In the first paragraph, state the exact job title or job description you are applying for and how you found out about that job opening. This is absolutely essential because you don’t want the hiring manager to have trouble figuring out which position you want. After a short introduction, go straight to selling yourself. Busy HR managers will spend only a few seconds to glance or skim through your letter, so highlight only your top skills and attributes. The last part of the letter should request an interview and thank the reader for his time.


Keep It Short, Specific and Customized


Keep the letter short. No one today has the time to read a long five-page letter that describes in detail all of your skills and qualification. Use simple sentences and eliminate all unnecessary words. The entire letter should only be 3-5 paragraphs long. You must be specific. For example, don’t describe your achievements as “successfully improved sales.” You need to state precisely what you succeeded in doing, such as “increased sales by 25 percent.”

Customize your letter to the employer. Describe your skills and work history in terms of the job requirements on their job listing. For instance, if the company is looking for a person who is excellent in “audio and video streaming and integration,” then your letter should emphasize your skills in that area.

A good cover letter can boost the responses that you receive when you apply for a job. Take the time to write a great cover letter, and you double or even triple the number of interviews you get. A great cover letter will give you an advantage over the others applying for the same job.

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