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Software developers are behind every computer and phone application you can’t live without. They used their skills and expertise to create programs that allow people to complete specific tasks, provide maintenance and creatively solve problems.
Like other careers in the tech industry, software developers are in high demand, so there might be some stiff competition for a single software development position. While you may think it’s unnecessary, a cover letter is a great way to introduce yourself and convince potential employers that you’re the right person. To help you, this page will:
A key aspect of nailing your cover letter is tailoring it to the job. You might have an assortment of hard skills, technical skills and soft skills you can talk about but you should focus on things that directly relate to the job description and the company. Let’s use this example of a software developer job posting and what’s listed in bullet points:
Essential duties and responsibilities:
You might be skilled in additional coding languages or have other soft skills that are just as important to do the job (such as great organizational skills, interpersonal skills or excellent time management) but you should focus your cover letter on the skills and requirements the recruiter listed. Don’t deviate from what’s in the job description and avoid repeating information that’s already on your resume.
Feature abilities and experiences relevant to the software development position and ensure it doesn’t cross into software engineering territory. The jobs might be similar but they do have some differences.
Not sure what your cover letter should look like? Here’s a software engineer cover letter sample to help get you started:
Dear Mr. Smith,
Since 2018, I have served as a software developer for [Example Company], where I have developed innovative solutions for several multimillion-dollar clients. On a day-to-day basis, I am responsible for a multitude of software development tasks, including design, coding, documentation, testing and implementation.
Since I started my career in full-stack web development, I have participated in several proposals and presentations that have landed million-dollar contracts. Additionally, I have worked closely with our development team to integrate business and user needs into high-quality solutions while staying within budget requirements.
My experience and knowledge in the field show that I can help your company excel by working as a software developer. Thank you for your time and consideration, I look forward to discussing this opportunity to further showcase my work capabilities.
Follow our expert tips to make the best use of your professional cover letter:
Your cover letter will likely start with your name and contact information in the header. Typically, you’ll include your full name, email address, phone number and job networking profile links such as LinkedIn. From there, you can go on to write your cover letter using a template that matches your resume template.
Your software developer cover letter should be addressed to the hiring manager or department leader. Avoid generic salutations like “Dear Hiring Manager” or “To Whom It May Concern” and look up the hiring manager’s name. You might find it on the company’s website or LinkedIn. Once you have it, use it to address the letter to them (e.g. “Dear Mr. Brown,” “Dear Dr. Brown,” or “Dear Ms. Brown.”)
The salutation is followed by the first paragraph. Introduce yourself with a hook and list your best or most interesting accomplishments immediately to capture the reader’s attention. While most candidates start a cover letter with a self-explanatory introduction, such as “I’m pleased to have the opportunity to apply for this position,” the best cover letter will immediately convey some sort of relevant and impressive experience. Additionally, you can mention your years of experience in this section as well.
Dear Mr. Brown,
When I started working as a software developer six years ago, I never imagined the impact my work would have on other people. I’ve used my coding skills to create, develop and regularly update applications, such as BetterSleep, that have positively impacted people’s lives, an outcome that aligns with SunnyTech’s mission and I hope to continue in your software development position.
In the second paragraph of your cover letter, you can talk about what skills set you apart from other candidates. You can choose one or two skills mentioned in your software developer resume to further expand on, use metrics to showcase how your abilities have been a valuable asset in previous positions and state your case as to why you’re the best candidate for the job.
As a software developer, I have used programming languages such as Python, HTML and SQL to meet and surpass client expectations. BetterSleep had an estimated budget of 3M dollars and together with other software developers and programmers, we found creative solutions and created an application that is user-friendly, easy to navigate and saved 10% of the budget. Through weekly reports and database documentation, we successfully handled an increase in registrations of 30%, and actively updated the software, always keeping in mind the user’s satisfaction.
Once you’ve proven you’re the best fit for the position, it’s time to create a bold call to action. Don’t hesitate to ask for an interview and always thank the recruiter or hiring manager for their time. For example:
Thank you for taking the time to review my resume. I look forward to hearing from you to discuss how my skills and experience can contribute to your software development team and company.
For a more detailed guide with extra examples, check our How to Write a Cover Letter article.
Ensure your software developer resume looks and reads professionally with our resume resources.
Now that you have everything you need to get started, let’s quickly recap the most important tips:
No matter what job you’re applying for, it’s always best to write up a cover letter. Although it may not be required for every job position, it presents your skills and accomplishments concisely to a potential employer. Writing a cover letter will only take you a few minutes with a cover letter template. Using a template can help you transform a generic cover letter into a unique presentation of your skills.
Keep in mind that within your cover letter, you should make it clear that you’ve read the job description. Most employers want to know that you have a feel for the company name, company culture and a good understanding of the position before you interview.
Generally, your cover letter should be about half a page long to three-quarters of a page long. That will typically be about 200 to 300 words long. The length of your cover letter may vary depending on what professional experience you have, as well as what soft skills and hard skills you list. A cover letter builder can help you create an engaging cover letter that won’t lose the hiring manager’s attention.
Yes, this cover letter example still works if you don’t have many years of job experience. Just make sure to adapt the letter to any experience you have while focusing more on your soft skills. You can also rely on your academic work, certifications and non-work achievements. These accomplishments will show you have the skills necessary for the new job.
You should write your cover letter the same way you’d write an entry-level software developer cover letter:
We personalize your experience.