Today we are going to talk about creating the perfect cover letter!
Why do you need a cover letter? This is a frequently asked question because it contains the same information as your resume, so why use both? A cover letter is important and useful because it gives you the opportunity to tell the Hiring Manager why you would be a good candidate for the position. Your employment experience on your resume is point form and solely based on your duties as an employee, your cover letter can explain what you learned from previous employment and your skills that you have or that you have developed over time.
Now we’re not saying to write an essay of a cover letter. Cover letters should be maximum 1 page or even better 3-5 short paragraphs (half a page).
Here are some easy tips to create the perfect cover letter:
- Your cover letter should always have a header. The header will have your contact information as well as the employers contact information.
- First & Last Name
- Street address, City, Postal Code
- Phone number and Email address
- You should use a salutation (greeting), this salutation should address the Hiring Manager by first and last name. Refrain from using “To Whom This May Concern”, this is too vague and shows that it is possibly a generic cover letter not specifically made for that position.
- First paragraph or introduction should tell the Hiring Manager why you are writing the cover letter. Tell them who you are, what job you are applying for and your career objectives.
- Your second paragraph should touch upon why you want to work for their company.
- The third paragraph should highlight your skills and experience related to the position, and go into some depth about any other qualifications or strengths you feel you might have.
- Your final paragraph should bring together all of the elements you spoke about above, and finish with you thanking the Hiring Manager for their time, and that you look forward to hearing back.
Imagine your resume as a book, the cover letter is the intro or interlude to the story line. It gives the Hiring Manager an idea of what they should expect from your resume and it shows that you put in some extra time and thought when applying to the job.