An effective cover letter tailored to your circumstances grants you the best weapon in a job-hunting campaign. Major employers choose their workers more from their cover-letters than from their resumes. A perfect attention and interview getter, a carefully written cover letter will serve you well, for it will accompany your resume and resumes can be dull and are tossed aside easily.
A good practice for writing a cover letter is to take your time to think about what you need to write. The best cover letters are written in this planning stage. Ask yourself first what the potential employer would need from you and what you are willing to offer him.
List, on paper your skills and your assets for the specific job you are applying for. You may not include all of those in your letter, but to have them in writing in front of you will help you choose your words carefully.
A cover letter that could apply to most situations may consist of:
* An introductory paragraph introducing yourself and stating the position you are after, also from whom you heard of or where you read about the specific job opening or who referred you if you were referred for the job
* A short paragraph about your background, educational credentials, and work experience (Don’t skip this thinking you are already enclosing your resume. Remember you are highlighting yourself.)
* Another paragraph pointing out your achievements that could relate to the job you are seeking and your personal attributes you think are important for the job
* Your request for employer’s action on your application (Here, you might add a request for a future job with the firm, if this certain job is already filled.)
* Closing paragraph with appreciation for the employer’s time and his consideration of your job request
Most standard cover letters are much shorter than well-written cover letters. The difference between the two kinds is that well-written ones may get you the interview.
In a well-written cover letter, grammar, spelling, and punctuation are correct, the sentences short, the expression with simple words, without slang, and to the point.
Never forget to proofread your cover letters, even if you consider yourself a master of the language. Everyone can make a carelessness mistake at any time, like not adding a contact e-mail or telephone number or forgetting to sign the letter.
Another effective attribute of a successful cover letter is its physical appearance. Drafting your cover letter with a professional looking letterhead on quality paper helps to make a good first impression. Make sure the date and the inside address are included as well as the salutation, complementary closing, and your signature. Also, do not forget the word “enclosure” since your resume will be enclosed with your letter.
A meticulously written cover letter can be critical to the success of a job hunt. May your search bring you the best job you deserve.
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