Many people fail to realize the importance of cover letters in their job applications. For one, the resume isn’t always enough for the interviewer to weigh if you are a capable candidate or not. Not only that, but the resume itself is very structured and dry, meaning that there is very little room for you to introduce yourself properly as a person.
The cover letter is an essential part of any job application, and there are certain tips and tricks that you can apply in order to make it much more attractive.
1. Use a template
Using a template doesn’t mean lifting a cover letter from the internet – that never goes well with employers. If you want to have a properly structured cover letter, you should look for a template online or create it yourself.
This will help you fill in the blanks more easily and focus on the content instead of the structure. Having a clearly defined letter in which the employer can easily find the information they are looking for will bring you a step closer to being hired.
2. Don’t repeat yourself
Your resume has all the information your employer needs in order to assess your professional capabilities. Your cover letter is a companion piece to that resume, meaning that it should organically connect to it.
Try expanding on the skills and information you have listed in the resume by adding more details about your previous experiences, how you acquired those skills and what your ambitions are for the future. Repeating yourself and otherwise making the cover letter uninteresting won’t get you closer to being hired and it will make you look bad.
3. Show your skills
If you have listed hard skills and professional experience in the resume, why not show your employer what you are capable of?
Write your cover letter according to all the professional background you have listed in the resume – format your paper correctly, getting rid of all the editing errors in the process, use technical jargon and make jabs at popular trends in the industry. Having your cover letter overly formal might not land you a position in the company, so try to loosen up as you write it.
4. References and testimonials
Even though you’ve listed some references in the resume, adding a few testimonials or expanding on those references is a great idea. The resume will only allow you to list references and keep the information very short – expand on that information and add more details in the cover letter.
You can call your previous bosses and ask for verified testimonials about your skills and performance as a worker. This is a great way to get ahead of other candidates and earn some trust early on.
5. Format and edit
Regardless of the job position you are applying for, your cover letter and resume should look impeccable. Format your paper properly and make sure they are readable. Make sure that the font is in the 9-12pt range that your paragraphs and subheadings are clearly defined and makes sense when read from beginning to end.
Also, your grammar and proofreading should be clear as bell, without any exceptions. You can easily check your letter in Microsoft Word; ask a friend for some help or look for professional help online using writer ratings – do anything you can to make your cover letter and resume shine from a technical standpoint.
6. The shorter the better
Seeing all the details and things we have listed so far, you would think that the cover letter should be long and thorough – that is only partially true. The cover letter should be as short as possible, while still conveying the right message. The optimal length of a cover letter is one page, including your bio and contact information.
If the cover letter is anything more than that it might make the employer bored or annoyed that they have to flip through pages to see the whole picture. Start working to their benefit early on and keep your thoughts short and organized. This will not only make the cover letter more appealing and attractive, but also give the employer an impression of a reasonable person who knows how to get things done.
7. Be yourself
While it goes without saying, you need to be yourself when you write your cover letter. The employer might not notice a difference in the style of writing or speech patterns but they will notice your lack of skills if you listed something just for show. It’s always better to list the things you are actually good at and be honest about your abilities and wishes.
Having an ambitious employee who works twice as hard as the professional who slacks off is always better, and employers know that. Show who you are in your cover letter and be yourself all the way.
As you can see, the cover letter is an essential part of any job application. It allows the employer to paint a clear picture of what kind of a person they are hiring. The cover letter should always act as a second half of the resume and never as something just because you have to. Put equal amount of effort into crafting both papers and the right employer will surely take notice of you.