A cover letter is a job application document that is sent along with your resume to a prospective employer to indicate your interest in a position.
Identifies the position for which you are applying.
Indicates your interest in the position and employer.
States your main qualifications, with supporting examples.
Specifies the action(s) that you will take in pursuit of this employment opportunity.
Use resume paper, preferably white (8.5″ x 11″) with a matching envelope (email or electronic submission is also acceptable).
Ensure that there are no grammatical errors in the letter.
Make sure the letter is typed.
Keep the letter brief and to the point (one page long).
Avoid negative approaches – boastfulness, exaggerations, inconsistency, etc.
Use specific examples that an employer can relate to/understand.
Opening paragraph: Get the interest of the employer. 1. State why you are writing and give information to show your interest in this specific organization. 2. Name the position you are to applying and how you heard about it.
Middle paragraph(s): Make the employer want to know more about you (offer you an interview!). 1. Explain why you are interested in working for the employer. 2. Point out your achievements or qualifications in this field, especially those that relate to the job description or job requirements. 3. Provide examples that support your ability to perform in the role 4. Avoid word-for-word repetition with your resume (don’t bore the person reading your application!). Your cover letter is an opportunity to express your personality and drive.
Closing paragraph: Get that interview! 1. Thank the employer for the consideration for future employment. 2. Repeat your contact information (email and telephone). 3. Provide examples that support your ability to perform in the role 4. For applications where you are making a physical (mail) submission to a specific person within the company, consider stating that you will contact the employer in the near future (e.g., next week). 5. If you are applying to a role where the application process for the role you are applying to is not formalized, ask for an appointment, at the employer’s convenience.
Here is an example cover letter, for reference: