- DEGREES & PROGRAMS
- AREAS OF INTEREST
- Tuition & Aid
- Why Strayer
The process of finding new job opportunities has changed, and it’s easy to wonder if cover letters are still relevant. The simple answer is yes. Unless a potential employer has asked you not to include a cover letter, the serious candidate (that’s you) will always do so.
Some job seekers treat cover letters like a formality that doesn’t have much of an impact. This is a costly mistake. Hiring managers do read them, and they do matter. Here are five steps to make your cover letter work harder for you.
The first step toward writing your best cover letter is to know why you’re writing it. The purpose of a cover letter is to capture the interest of hiring managers, inspire them to read your resume, and ultimately make them want to call you for an interview. In terms of structure, every cover letter you write should:
Beyond that, there is no concrete formula. Unlike a resume, the cover letter should reveal a bit of your personality.
STEP 2: OPEN STRONG.
STEP 3: STRIKE THE RIGHT TONE.
STEP 4: KEEP IT RELEVANT.
STEP 5: WRITE A MEMORABLE CONCLUSION.
You’ve put a lot of effort into writing a great cover letter, so don’t end with a whimper. “I greatly look forward to hearing from you in due course,” is a forgettable closure. Instead, reiterate your passion for what the company is doing and where it’s going. Reinforce the idea that you share the same vision and that you have a unique ability to meet the company’s needs.
When you finish a cover letter, read it from beginning to end. Look for ways to improve the flow and enhance the message. Repeat this process. The energy you put in will be worth it. The average professional will write many cover letters over the course of their career, and it’s a skill that evolves over time. Build on what you’ve learned from previous efforts, but try to keep a fresh perspective. When you know how to write a great cover letter, your next job interview is never far off.