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How to write a Cover Letter for a job

What is a Cover Letter?

A cover letter, also called a job application letter is a brief which allows you to provide a piece of elaborated information in accordance with the position you intend to apply for. It has to be that part of the information that is cardinal and can not be placed effectively in the resume. You need to understand the fact that a cover letter brings you an opportunity to introduce yourself in a more effective way and this is the document where you can share your aspirations and motivations with the hiring body.

The mistakes applicants make when drafting a Cover Letter

Usually, applicants take a cover letter for granted therefore, they do not give their best in write one. Remember, never write a cover letter just for the sake of writing it. Give it your best. It has to have the kind of perfection and force the employer to reach you straight away after reading it. Some of the most common mistakes when writing a cover letter are;

  1. Rewriting your resume. Explaining points mentioned in your cv in your cover letter is entirely a wrong idea.
  2. Talking only about yourself.
  3. Focusing on why you need this job instead of stating why you are a perfect fit.
  4. Not highlighting your skills that Company is looking for.
  5. Making it too long adding every little detail which is not worth mentioning.
  6. Using the wrong format.
  7. Not re-reading before submission. Always reread your cover letter and resume for typos, structure, and grammatical errors.
  8. One of the most common mistakes is using the same cover letter. You are required to tailor fit your cover letter and resume every time you apply to a new job.

Structure of a Cover Letter

Structure of a cover letter

Let’s now see what information to place under all the sections.

Heading:

includes your name, phone, email address, and date. Home address is optional. Along with your information, you are supposed to add the name of the hiring manager, his designation, the Company’s name, and address.

Salutation:

also called greeting is how you address the hiring manager. if you know his name you can write as “Dear Mr. XYZ,” or “Dear Ms. ABC,“. In case, you do not have enough information about whom to address directly you can skip this part. But it is not a good idea to start with “To whom it may concern.”

Beginning/Opening:

Consider this first paragraph of your cover letter as “kill or cure” for your future. Start with an engaging pitch and tone as the content you put up here will determine if the hiring manager is going to read further or not. Avoid using cliched sentences as; I read about this job through a friend and I am very excited to apply for the said position. Instead, bring up something notable or write about your passion for the field you opted.

Body/Context:

Body is the second paragraph in your cover letter. It is completely up to the applicant how much can he make out of this. It is of foremost importance to match your skill set with the specific needs Company is looking for. Explain your achievements in those skill sets and convince your employer to consider you for the post.

Ending/Closing:

Are you thinking the opening and body of your cover letter are strong enough to land on the board? Not yet. Remember, you are not the only person applying for the job. Now is the time to tell the hiring manager why are you the perfect fit for the position? Elaborate how can you make a difference that too, a positive one being in their team. It is always wrong to ask for a package in a cover letter or to say you badly need this job. Sign-off is also included in this section of a letter. Avoid using cliched phrases as “Thanking in anticipation” Alternatively, you can use;

  • Best Regards,
  • Thank you,
  • Sincerely,

P.S. Cover letter are of two types, if it is to be sent as email text you are required to mention the position you are applying for and job reference number (if any). In this case, you can also skip your name, phone, email address in the Heading section. If you are writing on a document for attachment alongside your resume, follow the above format as it is.

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