Write a cover letter that gets you hired! Your cover letter is the first thing potential employers see, and it can either catch their attention—or simply get passed by. To surpass your job competition, it’s important to know a few tips to craft a winning cover letter. Here’s how.

Four Tips on How to Write a Cover Letter that Works

  • Answer one important question: why should this employer hire you?
    Your cover letter should introduce you and explain how your unique qualifications and experience make you the perfect candidate for the job. Pure and simple, you want your cover letter to pique the interest of the employer, and make and him or her want to review your resume. This is the first step on the way to an interview.
  • Leave the chronology for your resume.
    Your cover letter should not list out your past employment, education or other job experiences. That’s the job of your resume. Instead, it should paint a picture of you for the employer.
  • Give it a personal touch.
    Infuse your cover letter with your personality! If you can, include a short anecdote about why you want to work for this particular company. Also, write in a voice that is tailored to the type of job to which you’re applying. If it’s a graphic design or marketing firm, it might help to stay somewhat informal. If it’s a job in the medical field, you may wish to stay strictly formal.
  • Keep it brief.
    Open with an introduction to you. Then explain why you’re a great fit for the job. Finally, let the employer know that you will follow up with him or her in a specified time frame, thank him or her for reading your cover letter, and close. Keep your cover letter short, sweet and to the point.

Review, review, review
Before you submit your cover letter, always proofread. Ask a friend or family member to read it over and give their edits. Your careful attention to detail will reflect your professionalism.

Be original
Never re-use the same cover letter when applying for different positions. Always create a new one and write it specifically for that job based on the job description in the ad.

Your hard work will pay off
Remember that employers are sifting through stacks of resumes. In order to get noticed and land the job you want, it’s critical to put in time when you craft your cover letter. Your efforts will showcase your dedication to getting hired and your commitment to quality.

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