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How To Write A Great Resume Cover Letter

On the first page of our Cover Letters Guide we introduced some general principles of good cover letter writing. Here we help you with the content -- what to say.

Resume Cover Letter Content

Here are 10 Top Tips for great resume cover letters.

  1. Find out the name of the person to address your cover letter to and write to that person. Use the name and title of the person and make sure you spell names correctly.
    If you don't know who this person should be, call the company or do an online search to find out to whom you should address your cover letter.

    Simply writing "Dear Sir/Madam" or some other sort of generic address shows lack of initiative. Personnel departments get piles of these types of covering letters every week and most are ignored.

  2. If you've spoken to someone prior to sending your resume/CV and covering letter, refer to this in your opening paragraph. If you have not, briefly introduce yourself in the first paragraph and give a short reason as to why you, in particular, would be a good fit for this job.

    What you want to do is to stimulate the employer's interest so that he or she will read all of your cover letter and your resume or CV as well.
    If you are applying for a job in particular, come right out and state:
    1. Why you want the job
    2. Why you meet the requirements
    3. What benefits you can bring to your new employer
  1. If you are sending a resume cover letter in response to an advertisement, refer to that in your letter as well.

    Tell the employer what you will contribute to the job.

    Find out about the company's products, its needs, the nature of its business and so on. Discuss briefly how you can be advantageous to your potential employer if you get the job.

    Whatever the case, make sure you research the company and know something about them and what your job would entail before you write your cover letter. Then make sure you highlight your specific assets and the benefits these will bring to the company.

    This is not the time to be shy! Say exactly why you are right for the job and what you can contribute to make the company successful. If you don't sell yourself, no one else is going to.

  2. Close your letter with a request for the employer to act. Say something to the effect of, "I look forward to hearing from you," or, "I can be available for an interview at your convenience." The point is, you want to say something that is going to encourage the employer to take a specific action with regard to your potential hire.

  3. Keep your resume cover letter short and sweet. Ideally, it should be no longer than one side of A4 paper, perhaps shorter. Make each sentence and paragraph concise, brief, and to the point.

  4. Always type your resume cover letter unless you receive a specific request to send a handwritten one.

  5. Use good quality paper, preferably white with black print. If possible, make it the same quality and color as your CV or resume.

  6. Carefully check for typos, misspellings, etc. Carefully correct any mistakes you find then print the cover letter and sign at the bottom with your signature.

  7. Don't enclose any other material unless asked, such as references or copies of educational certificates.

  8. Keep copies of your resume cover letters, the dates you sent them, and to whom you've written. Not only will it help you keep track, but it will also prevent you from writing to the same person twice, by mistake.

Do You Have Resume Cover Letter Examples?

resume cover letter

Yes we do.

Download the Cover Letters Guide and you'll get lots more pages as well as 4 cover letter resume templates as a bonus!

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