In brief, it is adocument attached with your resume and CV while applying for a job. It is alsoknown as a motivational letter or a letter of introduction. Job seekers usecover letter as a tool of introducing themselves to the potential employersexplaining that in what respects they are suitable for a particular job and howthey stand out from others in performing that job effectively.
Employers mayexamine a cover letter very thoughtfully and concretely to screen out the unfitcandidates who are not possessing even the basic skills required to perform aparticular job. Cover letters are generally of two categories, namelyapplication letter and inquiry letter. It is a (typically) one-pager documentthat goes beyond your resume to explain in detail that how you can proveyourself to be a value addition asset for the company. They are marketingdevices since whenever you are appearing for an interview you are in somerespects selling yourself to the company.
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There are namely 5 broadcomponents in a cover letter. Firstly, you have to begin with a salutationwherein you should try to get the name of the hirer as it will give a good impressionof yours to the hirer and if not, you can quote it like “To whom it may beconcerned” or “Dear hiring manager”. Secondly, you have to introduce yourselfhighlighting your strengths and how you are suitable for a particular positionyou have applied for. Thirdly, the applicant must cover his/her achievements andshould throw a light on the key competencies he/she possesses. You can alsoplace some examples of achievements here which you are not able to mention inyour resume.
Fourthly, in this section highlight the information which you knowabout the company, like the company’s objectives, upcoming projects, or thework culture as it will give an idea to the hirer that you have done somepreliminary work. Lastly, summarize what you want to offer.Here are some tips whilewriting a cover letter, ensure that the cover letter is tailoring therequirements for the position you are applying for and make sure that it isunique in nature, it must specify that how you will add value with respect towhich you must try to quantify your successes, use keywords wherever possibleand circle out specific skills or qualifications which are critical to the job,have a look at samples before writing your own since it will give an idea ofinformation that is to be included and is relevant for the job and make surethat you remove the spelling and grammatical errors (you can seek help from acareer counsellor as well).Cover letters may help ajob seeker to catch an eye of a prospective employer so it should be perfect inall respects and should seem professional to the reader.