Some HR Managers consider the cover letter the most important part of your application. And, if you find writing a cover letter intimating, this might not be good news for you. But don’t worry, we’re not here to give you bad news, we’re here to give you tips to write a cover letter for a job. Tips that will make it easier for you to write a great cover letter. And also tips that will make the HR Managers fall in love with you.
Sounds good, right?
Take a look at our tips to write a cover letter for a job:
Tip No. 1 For Writing A Cover Letter – Don’t Write In Your Cover Letter The Same Things That Are Written In Your Resume
You can write about your experience and past jobs in your cover letter as long as you do not mention the same things you mentioned in your resume. Instead of repeating yourself, try to get into details and explain your responsibilities and how you contributed to the goals of the companies you previously worked for and don’t use bullet points! Bullet points are for resumes. Use full sentences are for cover letters.
Tip No. 2 For Writing A Cover Letter – Think About What You Can Offer To The Company
Most people are tempted to flatter the employer by telling them how great the position they are offering is and what an honor it will be to be hired for the job they applied. That’s not what HR Managers want to hear. They probably know these things already. But what hiring managers want to hear is what you can bring to the table. And that leads us to tip number three:
Tip No. 3 For Writing A Cover Letter – Explain What You Can Do
Don’t focus only on your past job experiences when writing a cover letter. Tell the HR Managers what you are capable of doing and what you plan to do in the future in they offer you the job. Be specific and list everything you can do for the company. Also, describe how your skills will allow you do to the things you plan to do.
Tip No. 4 For Writing A Cover Letter – Talk About Your Skills
And speaking of skills, showcasing your previous work experience without emphasizing your skills will lead you nowhere so talk about your skill set. Let the managers know why you have the potential to do the job.
Tip No. 5 For Writing A Cover Letter – Don’t Focus On Your Education
Education is important but a cover letter should reflect your ability to do the job you applied for not to present your educational background. Mention your education but focus on your previous jobs. Or previous volunteer work or internships that you did if you have no work experience.
Tip No. 6 For Writing A Cover Letter – Don’t Apologize
This might seem a little bit odd but people tend to apologize a lot in their cover letters. Usually for the skills they don’t have or the lack of experience. Don’t draw attention to your weakness, focus on the skills you have. For example, if you have no prior PR experience but you applied for a job in PR, instead of apologizing for your lack of PR experience, list the things you did that can help you in your PR job. Maybe you did web research, maybe you wrote articles, maybe you organized events during your college years. All these things are relevant. PR involves a lot of research, writing, and planning skills are always welcomed so instead of apologizing for not working in PR before, showcase the skills that make you great for a PR job. The same thing applies to other industries. Find the common ground and talk about that.
Tip No. 7 For Writing A Cover Letter – Don’t Talk About Irrelevant Jobs
If you don’t have a lot of experience in an industry, you will be tempted to list all the jobs you had. But that is not the best thing you can do. You can list those jobs in your resume if you don’t have a lot of work experience in general but focus only on the jobs that provided you with some skills you can use for the job you are applying for and, if you have years of experience in the industry, focus on the skills needed for the job you are applying not all the skills you developed throughout the years.
Tip No. 8 For Writing A Cover Letter – Use Statistics
Not everybody loves numbers but HR Managers do so, if you can, provide some statistics that can illustrate how you helped the companies you worked for in the past. You can ask a previous manager to write a testimonial as evidence or your statistics. Don’t forget to add the contact info of the person who provided the testimonial so the HR can verify it.
Tip No. 9 For Writing A Cover Letter – Always Use A Custom Cover Letter
Yes, this is time-consuming but it also shows that you took the time to write the cover letter. You can start with a template but make sure you change it everytime you apply for a job. No Hiring Manager wants to receive a cover letter that starts with “Dear Hiring Manager”. If you know the name of the manager, great. If you don’t, try to customize the rest of the cover letter to the best of your ability. And while we’re at it, don’t be too formal. Be professional but friendly and approachable.
Tip No. 10 For Writing A Cover Letter – Don’t Be Overly Excited
Showing your enthusiasm is one thing but being overly excited is not credible. Stay genuine when you state you want the job. Explain why you’d love the job but stay away from stating things like “I’m excitedly applying” or “I’m absolutely thrilled to”. Downplay the excitement a little bit to be credible.
Tip No. 11 For Writing A Cover Letter – Don’t Say The Things Everyone Else Is Saying
Most people nowadays are creative, responsible, team players, and able to work with different people. Actually, they aren’t. But they say it anyway. Don’t do that. If you really are one, some or all of the things we mentioned above, find a different way to say it by referring to your kills.
Tip No. 12 For Writing A Cover Letter – Adjust Your Tone Of Voice To The Company’s Tone Of Voice
You have to be able to communicate in the same language the company communicates. After all, you want to work for the company. So make sure you are familiar with the tone of voice of the company and write your cover letter in that style. Being too formal with a company that is not at all formal will never get you the interview.
Tip No. 13 For Writing A Cover Letter – Don’t Be Too Modest
You are writing a cover letter so you are allowed to brag. And it’s not really bragging when all you do is talking about your skills, experience, and future plans.
Tip No. 14 For Writing A Cover Letter – Ask Someone To Check Your Cover Letter
Don’t send the cover letter to the hiring manager before sending it to a friend or family member. And don’t ask them what they think because they will be tempted to say yes. Ask them if the cover letter gets them excited or if the cover letter makes you look like the best person for the job.
Tip No. 15 For Writing A Cover Letter – Spellchecking Is Mandatory
Since you are going to ask someone to check the cover letter, ask them to look for spelling mistakes as well. Sure, you have to check the cover letter for mistakes too but having a second person doing that is better since you might omit some typos only because you’re reading what you wanted to write instead of what you’ve actually written. It can happen to anybody so better safe than sorry.
Tip No. 16 For Writing A Cover Letter – Don’t Go Over A Page
This is not a rule but it’s recommended not to write more than a page. Think about the fact that HR Managers receive tons of cover letters every day. Keep it short and go over a page only if you really have to.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to stand out. Respecting all the rules for writing a cover letter won’t make you stand out. Don’t be too scared and try to break some of the rules. Maybe write a creative cover letter instead of a classic one or include testimonials from previous managers for all your skills. Keep an open mind while writing the cover letter and don’t get lost in a template.