5 Things Every Cover Letter Should Have

Resume Target
March 9, 2014




If your cover letter is longer than 350 words, it is too long. Go ahead, open it up and take a look at the word count. It’s too long right?

The majority of job seekers try to stuff too much information into their cover letter. The result is that the document is very text heavy, recruiters and hiring managers don’t want to read it and the job seekers have wasted their time.

Every cover letter should consist of five components – no more, no less. By sticking to this outline when writing a cover letter, you can be sure that you’ve incorporated all required information while staying concise.

1. Overview

Your cover letter needs to introduce who you are. Similar to a value statement on your resume, you want to tell the hiring manager your title, years of experience, industry expertise and academic background. This first paragraph should show the hiring manager that you have all of the minimum qualifications for the role.

2. Current Role

The second paragraph should outline your current role and company and how it relates to the role you are applying for. If you are applying for a role as a manager, highlight the management skills you’ve acquired and displayed in your current role. This second paragraph will show the hiring manager that you will succeed in the role.

3.  The “Wow” Factor

This is your chance to shine. Include three of your most impressive and relevant achievements as bullet points in your cover letter. We recommend picking points out of your resume that directly relate to the tasks you will be accountable for in the new role. This component of your cover letter will show the value you’ve contributed to your former employers, and the positive impact you will have within a new organization

4. The Company

Now it’s time to show the hiring manager that you are not only the right fit for the role, but also the right fit for the company. Take a look at the company website and review their values and goals. Then relate them to your own characteristics and draw a correlation between yourself and the company. Your ability to mesh within the corporate culture will be a large factor in your success.

5. Conclude

That’s it – don’t add any new information. Simply thank the hiring manager for their time and mention that you look forward to meeting with them in person to further discuss this opportunity. This will show your confidence and professionalism. You are done.

Once you’ve drafted your cover letter using these five components, you will see the difference. The letter will not take up the entire page and will not be daunting to read. You will also notice that the short paragraphs are easy to skim through while still catching all of the important details. Finally, it is inevitable that your eye will be drawn towards the bulleted achievements, which is the most important information on your cover letter.

Congratulations, you’ve just written a spectacular and concise cover letter.  

ResumeTarget.com provides professional resume writing services for clients of all career levels across North America. We are the only resume writing company that offers a professionally written resume coupled with the guidance of recruiters, to guarantee that your resume will get results.

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