When you apply for a position, you will most often need to submit a resume and a cover letter. For the first, polish it with our tips here and make sure to keep it updated!
The cover letter, however, requires more thought and application. It is a chance to let the hiring manager know who you are, to introduce your personal unique qualities and focus on how they will help the organisation.
It goes without saying that you cannot simply submit the same cover letter for every application. A cover letter should be tailored to the position you are applying for. Thus:
- Use a clear cover letter template
There are many cover letter templates available to choose from, so make sure you pick one that is clear, simple and easy to read. Avoid fancy graphics and make sure you do not have any pictures or diagrams in your cover letter, it should only be text.
- Start with a header
Ensure that the hiring manager has easy access to your contact information by starting with a header listing your:
- Full Name
- Phone Number
- Name of the company you’re applying to
- Open with an attention-grabbing introduction
Having laid down the essential details, you can now begin your sales pitch. Grab the hiring manager’s attention from the get-go with two or three 2-3 of your relevant, outstanding achievements.
Avoid simply stating that you wish to apply for the position, instead, use your first sentence to point out what benefits you will bring. E.g., “I am eager to join ABC Inc as a change-maker in sustainability through promoting your energy solutions to new and diverse companies.”
- Detail your experiences
As we see in the example above, you have made a promise about what value you can bring the company in your opening statement.
Now it is time to detail how you plan to deliver. To do this, reference the job advertisement and point out three or four ways in which you fulfill or exceed its requirements. Also, reinforce your credibility by providing specific examples from your work experience.
- Close with a call to action
Do not just sign off with a bland “I hope to hear from you soon”. Instead, encourage action from the hiring manager by closing with an invitation to discuss, an appeal to go deeper into your suitability, or simply a repeat of your opening.
We hope these have helped you write a cover letter that grabs the eye and holds the attention. Now start writing and look forward to the interviews!