Top Tips for Writing the Perfect Cover Letter This Year

Writing the perfect cover letter can help you land the perfect job. Here’s what you need to do to make your cover letter as effective as possible.

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Perfect Cover Letter

When you’re writing your cover letter, it’s important that you try to make it as effective as possible. While just the act of writing a cover letter can put you ahead of all the job seekers who don’t even do that much, hiring managers want to see that your job application shows how you’re the right fit for the job, and a cover letter can go a long way to explaining this. Here’s some tips for writing the perfect cover letter.

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The Importance of a Cover Letter

A cover letter provides information about your career background to an employer, and allows you to show how you fit the job description as well as explain how you can help the company through this new job. If you want to impress your potential employer, a cover letter is a great starting point. It summarizes your resume and includes more information about your skill set and experience.


Keys To Making the Perfect Cover Letter

From top to bottom, here’s how to write a professional cover letter that perfectly fits the job posting.
 
Format
 
First up is format. Stick to either 10 or 12-point font, using a simple font like Arial or Calibri. A great cover letter also only needs around half a page to 3/4 of a page, which is usually around 250-350 words.
 
Header and introduction
 
Next is your header and introduction. At the top of the cover letter, put your address, email address, your phone number and related professional portfolio links, such as your LinkedIn profile. Then, address the letter with the hiring manager’s name, using the salutation “Dear [Full Name]” or “Dear Mr./Ms. [Last Name].” Avoid overly generic or old-fashioned introductions like “To Whom It May Concern,” “Dear Sir or Madam,” or “Dear Hiring Manager” if you can.
 
First paragraph: Introduce yourself with a hook and list your best achievements.
 
The first paragraph should be your hook. In this opening paragraph, start out with your best accomplishment or an anecdote that ties in with your best strengths and connects with what the job needs. This is how you’ll keep a prospective employer reading all the way through. End the opening paragraph by mentioning the specific job you’re applying for.
 
Second paragraph: Give more information about how you’re the best fit for the job.
 
Next, delve into some specific examples and stories related to your work experience. Tailor your achievements to the job ad, including transferable skills and unique experiences that you’ve had. Take this opportunity to further elaborate on information from your resume, rather than just copying and pasting what you’ve already written in the resume. If you want to single out a number of skills and accomplishments, you can do so using bullet points.
 
Third paragraph: Call to action
 
The third paragraph is your call to action. In this closing paragraph, reemphasize your interest in the job, and ask for the job interview. You should also sign off professionally, with a phrase like “Sincerely,” and your full name. If you’re submitting your cover letter as a hard document, sign the document after you print it out.
 
Proofreading and submitting
 
Finally, proofread before you submit your letter. First, run your cover letter text through a proofreading website or a word processor. This will help you avoid typos, which can kill a good cover letter more quickly than anything else. Submit your document in PDF format unless the company requests a specific file format, like .docx. PDF format is usually preferred, as it will maintain the “look” and design of your cover letter.
 
If you need more expert-guided advice to write a great cover letter, use the cover letter builder from ResumeHelp. You can find cover letter examples and cover letter formats that will help you get whatever job you’re looking for. Plus, our cover letter tips and advice will help you create a cover letter that catches a recruiter’s eye.


FAQ: Perfect Cover Letter

Q: Do I really need a cover letter?

Yes. You should be submitting a cover letter with all of your job applications unless the company specifically requests that you don’t submit a cover letter. These letters go over your qualifications, give a hiring manager extra information about your work experience, and allow you to ask for a job interview directly. Because many job candidates don’t submit a cover letter, it also shows that you really care about getting the job. A great cover letter should be considered a must-have when applying for any job.

Q: What is the biggest mistake for a cover letter?

The biggest cover letter mistake is forgetting to proofread. Grammatical errors, typos, and typing mistakes will often immediately remove you from consideration, even if you have great communication skills and follow every other step exactly. Before you submit a cover letter, go over it multiple times to avoid any of these mistakes.

Q: How do I ensure my resume is just as good as my cover letter?

Your resume and your cover letter both need to showcase that you’re the right person for the job. If you want to be a perfect candidate, you need a perfect resume as well. The good news is that ResumeHelp can help you with that. Use the ResumeHelp resume builder to build your next resume with the hiring manager in mind.

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