A cover letter is a letter of introduction in which you present yourself to your prospective employer. Of all the documents that form part of your application, it will probably be the first document that will be read. It has to be clear, self-contained, simple and a good read the first time around.
Should You Even Bother Sending a Cover Letter?
There is a trend to the effect that cover letters are not very useful and that most decisions are made based on the resume. It may be true that some recruiters don't even bother reading cover letters because they are flooded with applications, or because they may have reached a point where looking at job applications has become routine. However, as a job seeker, you should always send a cover letter, unless specifically asked not to. If there's even just a remote chance that it may help you, you ought to take the time to write one.
Put the Cover Letter Tips That You Read in Perspective
If you do a search online looking for cover letter tips you will see a lot of information, from the very specific tips to the more general ones. Put these tips in perspective and field the ones that apply to you or that make sense to you. At the end of the day, you want to make an impression and connect with the reader. All the cover letter tips have to converge in this regard.
Now, Some Cover Letter Tips to Get You Going
As you write your cover letter, keep in mind that it should complement your resume. The two go hand-in-hand. Don't repeat what is already in your resume. Rephrase, shed a new perspective or emphasize what is in your resume instead. A well-written cover letter will give a personal touch to your application, draw attention to your strengths and spark interest in the reader. A recruiter that is impressed with your cover letter will pay more attention to your resume.
Avoid writing long cover letters and stick to what is essential to advance your application. Address issues that are not addressed in your resume, such as why you are interested in the position, how you became aware of the opening, etc. Avoid going beyond one page, unless you have very good reasons to do so.
As said earlier, some experts argue that a cover letter is at best neutral. However, this view is not shared by everyone. For applicants that have a weak candidacy, the cover letter can often be the trump card to the job interview. We hope that the cover letter tips in this section will help you improve the cover letter that you already have or, if you do not yet have one, form the basis for your cover letter to be.