How to write a good cover letter
Do you have a cover letter? Adding this document to your CV can increase your chances of being hired and it is an opportunity to stand out from the crowd. This document allows your prospective employers to get to know you better and it’s a great place to showcase your talents. Writing the perfect cover letter can be overwhelming but don’t despair, we have some awesome tips for you. Already have a cover letter in place? Then visit Job Mail to look for job opportunities.
1. Customise the document
While there will be parts of your cover letter that you can use when you’re applying for various job opportunities, it’s advisable to customise the letter for each position. When you write a cover letter specifically for the job that you’re applying for, it’s more likely that it will catch the attention of your prospective employer. Generic information is less appealing than a personalised letter. While this approach is more time consuming, the extra effort can make all the difference.
2. Provide contact details
Start the cover letter with your contact details. Not only does this make the document look professional, but it also makes it easy for the company to get hold of you if they want to schedule an interview.
3. Introduce yourself
Try and find out who you are addressing the cover letter to so that you can use their name in the introduction rather than beginning with ‘to whom it may concern’. Next mention which position you’re applying for. The rest of the introduction should summarise your basic information. This includes relevant details such as your educational information as well as your professional goals.
4. Promote yourself
After your introduction, you can start a new paragraph that showcases why you’re a good match for the position. This is your chance to emphasise your skills and work experience. It’s advisable to look at the description the company used in their job advertisement while you’re writing this section. This allows you to explain how your capabilities enable you to meet the company’s requirements. When you tailor your cover letter in accordance with what the company is looking for, it puts you ahead of your competition. You can even incorporate words from the job description into your cover letter. To strengthen this section of the document, research what the company’s goals are so that you can explain how you can play a role in helping the company to progress.
5. Finish with a conclusion
Make sure that you end off your cover letter as strong as you started. You can tell your prospective employer that you would love to meet them for an interview. This is also a good place to thank them for reading your letter.
6. Format the document
While the content of the letter is important, it is also vital to consider the layout of the document. Choose a format that is neat and clear so that your cover letter is easy to read while also having a professional appearance. You’ll need to consider the margins as well as the alignment, text font and size. It’s important to maintain consistent formatting throughout the document. Avoid fancy fonts and rather select a font that looks professional. You want your letter to be easy to read, so take this into account when you’re selecting a font size.
7. Mistakes to avoid
Avoid spelling and grammar mistakes at all costs. If there are errors in your cover letter, it makes a bad first impression. Microsoft Word and Google Docs will usually guide you in terms of spelling and grammar, but you can also make use of online tools, or even ask someone else to look at it for you, just to ensure no one missed anything. While you may incorporate some of the information from your CV, don’t make your cover letter a replica of your CV.
Rather than just repeating information, use your cover letter to elaborate on important points. Avoid telling your prospective employer how much getting the job would mean to you. Rather explain how you will be of benefit to their company. Don’t be vague when you write this document, this is your chance to impress your prospective employer, so make the most of it. It’s also important to be honest as including incorrect information is sure to get your relationship with your prospective employer off to a bad start.
Now that you know more about writing the perfect cover letter, it’s time to start applying for jobs. Browse through Job Mail to find relevant job opportunities and remember to create cover letters that make your applications stand out.