A well-crafted cover letter is an essential element of any successful job application. Done right, it will allow your passion and personality to shine through, convincing the hiring manager that you’re the perfect fit for the role. To bring you closer to landing your dream job, we talked with Adzuna’s in-house recruitment specialists, compiling a list of most essential cover letter tips.
1. Address your letter to a named individual
Time and time again, we see jobseekers reach for the bland “To Whom It May Concern”. Set yourself to a good start by addressing the hiring manager by their name. It will show that you’ve taken the time to do some background research, highlighting your tenacity and dedication to the role.
2. Introduce yourself
While it may sound obvious, sometimes candidates overlook the significance of the opening paragraph. This is where you should clearly and succinctly touch on your credentials, talk about relevant experience, or mention the key ways that make you the best candidate. If you have been referred for the job, this is also the right time to mention that.
3. Personalize it
We all know that job hunting is a time consuming process. But recycling a cover letter is never a good idea. Going at length about skills which aren’t sought after by the employer, is an easy way to catch you out on your shortcut. Each time you apply for a role, you should tailor your letter to the particular job description, demonstrating how well your skills and experience match up.
4. Don’t rehash your resume
Keep in mind that your cover letter is not your resume! Instead of mindlessly listing out experiences, use only the most impressive accomplishments that will help you make a solid case showing why you’re the best candidate for the given role.
5. Stick to the point
Remember that hiring managers have to sift through hundreds of cover letters on a daily basis, so if you want their attention — stay on point and avoid empty jargon at all cost! Speak to the requirements of the job, and support your claims with well chosen examples. Then go back and carefully revise it, cutting out anything that doesn’t seem essential.
6. Use simple language and uncomplicated sentence structure
Getting your point across well, requires a clear and coherent writing style. So write tight, and ruthlessly eliminate all unnecessary words.
7. Backup with numbers
Numbers speak a thousand words. Backup your examples with cold hard facts to show how your efforts saved your company money or driven more sales.
8. Finish off strong
In your last paragraph, reiterate why you’re the best candidate and give a convincing argument about how your unique set of skills will help the company meet and exceed their goals.
9. Keep it short
Be concise. Whether your cover letter is a Word document or a digital application form, the ideal length should consist of 3 paragraphs and not exceed 400 words.
10. Double check
Don’t risk losing out on your dream job because of a few careless typos. Take a minute or two to read over your letter or even ask a friend to review it to ensure it’s 100% error-free.
Good luck and happy job hunting!
Adzuna is a search engine for job ads used by over 11 million visitors per month that aims to list every job, everywhere. We search thousands of websites so our users don’t have to, bringing together millions of ads in one place. By providing smarter search options and powerful data about the job market, we give jobseekers the information they need to take control of their careers.
Adzuna was founded in 2011 by Andrew Hunter and Doug Monro, formerly of eBay, Gumtree, Qype and Zoopla, and is backed by leading Venture Capital firms Passion Capital, The Accelerator Group and Index Ventures.
Adzuna’s mission is to be the best place to start looking for a job. We love using the awesome power of technology to help match people to better, more fulfilling jobs and keep America working.