Today’s job market is highly competitive. It is for this reason that you want to do everything you can to stand out from the other applicants. Trying to figure out what to include in your cover letter can be a frustrating and dauntless task, but it doesn’t have to be. If you are not sure how to craft your cover letter, look at cover letter templates here to get an idea of what you can use for your own.
In most cases, including a cover letter will help you. It gives you the opportunity to highlight your best qualifications and your most relevant skills.
What Should You Include In Your Cover Letter And How Can It Help You?
A well-written cover letter gives you another chance to sell yourself to a potential employer. It also indicates that you really want the job because you are taking the extra time to write the letter. If there is something you want to relay to a potential employer that does not belong on a resume, a cover letter is a perfect place for it.
For instance, if you live in one state and are applying for a job in another state, you can explain in your cover letter that you plan to relocate, along with the reason why. Resumes showing large gaps in employment don’t look good. You can explain those gaps, assuming they are for good reason, in your cover letter.
For instance, women returning to the workforce after raising a family will have a very understandable gap in work experience on their resume. Resumes are formal and structured documents. You can use a cover letter to show a little more about you as a person.
Be a little unique, emphasize your accomplishments, and tie your skills and background to the job requirements as succinctly as possible. If you were referred to a particular company or have a mutual contact, including this information in your cover letter may help you.
You can also be less formal, while remaining professional, and tell your story in a memorable and engaging way. Be careful and don’t go overboard. You are not writing a short story or a novel. Tailor your cover letter to the specific job you want. You can share your job experiences and personal stories but make sure they relate to the job you’re applying to.
If you do include a cover letter with your resume, make sure it is well-written, clear, and concise. You want it to be a powerful sales pitch for your resume and help you get an interview.
When Not To Include A Cover Letter
There are some instances when including a cover letter might not be in your best interest. If you are not a good writer, it is best not to include one. There is nothing worse than a badly-written cover letter to ruin your chances of getting an interview, and ultimately the job.
Also, some job boards specifically request that you do not include a cover letter. Of course, in this situation, listen to the instructions and don’t send one. The company might actually be testing you to see how you follow directions.
Some companies might request that you send your application via an online platform. If there is no place for you to also submit a cover letter, don’t worry about it.
Make sure your cover letter is targeted towards the specific job. You don’t want to create one letter for all jobs and make it too generic.
Potential employers will be able to tell the difference between a canned cover letter and one that has been customized for their particular job opening. Highlight how your abilities, experience, and skills make you a perfect fit for the specific job.
Your letter should not be more than a page long. Ideally, it should only be a few paragraphs. Don’t just reiterate what is on your resume. Make sure it adds value to your resume and that you had a purpose in mind by writing it.
Review your letter many times. You want to make sure there are no typos, and that it is grammatically correct. Reading it out loud helps to identify errors you might not see when reading it silently.
You should also consider asking a family or friend to give it a second pair of eyes. When we read our own work, we tend to read what we meant, not necessarily what is on the page.
If you are interested in even more job-related articles and information from us here at Bit Rebels then we have a lot to choose from.