Are you looking for winning cover letter examples for your job search?
This guide will help you write top-notch cover letters.
What should you write to a company you’ve always wanted to join – but that isn’t advertising any jobs?
How about a cover letter that will go out to several different employers for more than one job?
Need a cover letter example for an academic role working with students, or a job working with animals?
Don’t worry, keep reading for six steps, 4 great cover letter examples and top tips. We’re here to help.
Table of Contents
- What is a cover letter?
- Why do you need a cover letter?
- How to write a cover letter?
- Examples of cover letters for job applications
- FAQ- Frequently Asked Questions
What is a cover letter?
It’s a brief, single-page document that accompanies your CV when you apply for a job. It introduces you to the hiring manager and provides additional information on your skills and experience that is relevant to the job.
It should be laid out in paragraphs, with each paragraph focusing on one major point, and include a header with your full name and contact information.
It should be tailored to the job you are applying for. A good cover letter can spark the HR manager’s interest and get them to want to read your resume, while a bad cover letter might mean that your application is going directly to the paper shredder!
Why do you need a cover letter?
1. To introduce yourself and tell employers why you are a good fit for the job.
It should include a strong opening statement that clearly states why you want the job and what you have to offer. It can also mention relevant skills, qualifications and goals.
2. To show employers that you have done your research and understand the company.
It can help employers understand that you have done your research and understand the company and the sector. You should highlight the skills and experience you have that match what the employer is looking for, as well as your enthusiasm for working for the company. You can discuss how your experience has enabled you to be able to meet the company’s needs and challenges. Furthermore, skills, such as adaptability and the ability to learn quickly, are probably necessary for the position. All of these elements will help convince the employer that you are the perfect candidate for the job.
3. To demonstrate your writing and communication skills.
A well-crafted cover letter will showcase the applicant’s qualifications and demonstrate their writing ability to the employer. This is especially important for roles such as PR, copywriting, and journalism, where great communication and written language are essential.
4. To show employers that you are motivated and excited about the opportunity.
Motivation and excitement demonstrate that you have a strong interest in the position and a willingness to work hard to succeed. It also allows you to introduce yourself to the hiring manager in a way that is genuine and memorable.
Enthusiasm can convey your personality. It is important to be passionate about the job you are applying for and make sure that you make this clear this in your cover letter.
5. To show employers that you have the right qualifications and experience for the job.
A cover letter allows you to highlight the most relevant skills and experience (degree, previous jobs) that make you the right person for THIS job.
6. To make the application process as easy as possible for employers.
A cover letter can make the application process easier for employers by introducing the applicant and demonstrating their worth and fit for the role. The cover letter can help employers quickly assess the job seeker’s qualifications and pre-screen them for the position. Additionally, cover letters can be tailored to each job application, emphasizing the job seeker’s most relevant skills and abilities for each role you apply for. When written with attention to detail and professionalism, a cover letter is a valuable tool to help employers assess the suitability of a job seeker quickly and easily.
How to write a cover letter?
Step 1: Pick the right cover letter template
It can be daunting trying to figure out which cover letter template to use for your job application. Here are some steps to help you find the right one:
- Determine the type of job you’re applying for.
- Look through our list of cover letter samples and download the template that best matches the type of job you’re applying for.
- Make sure your cover letter looks good visually and is easy to read.
- If you want to take it a step further, you can even create an entirely new cover letter that’s tailored specifically to the job you’re applying for.
- Finally, proofread your cover letter for any typos or mistakes before sending it out.
Following these steps will help you stand out and leave the best first impression. Good luck with your job search!
Step 2: Start with a header
it is important to put a header at the top of your cover letter that has your name and contact details (phone number and email address).
Step 3: Explain your skills and experience
Use some of the phrases used in the job description and provide examples of how you have used your skills in the past to succeed in similar roles.
For example, if the job description says, at least 2 years experience in sales with knowledge of the local market, you can say:
‘With two years experience in sales support and positive professional relationships with all the wholesalers in the region, I know the market well and…’
Step 4: Craft an attention-grabbing opening line
‘With three years of teaching experience in France and Italy as well as a B Grade CELTA qualification and a degree in English, I am an enthusiastic and professional teacher who is able to teach all age groups from kindergarten to adults.’
In just one line, this candidate has mentioned how long they have been a teacher, where they have worked, their key qualifications, and their skill set (age ranges that they can teach) and communicated that they are a great teacher!
Additionally, you can use your opening sentence to explain why the job is exciting to you and what you bring to the table.
Step 5: Explain why you’re a good fit for the company
Say why you’re a good fit for the company by highlighting the skills and experiences you have that match what the employer is looking for. Convince them that you’re enthusiastic about working for them and let them know you share their work values, culture and style. Research the company to demonstrate why you want to work there and how you could make a difference.
‘I am passionate about making sure that everyone, whatever their ability to pay, has access to quality care for their pets and so I would love to be a part of your community outreach program to provide free and low-cost pet care for veterans and vulnerable people. I am a people-person (as well as a dog-person!) and can quickly build rapport and reassure pets and their owners to help keep them calm ahead of treatment.’
This is a good example because the candidate talks about a program the company already has and mentions how she can add value to the team.
Step 6: Write an engaging conclusion
First, say again that you would love to join the team.
Second, thank the hiring manager for their time. Show your gratitude without coming off as too needy.
Third, finish the cover letter with a call to action. The very last sentence should be a call to action (in other words, to invite you to interview).
Finally, write down a formal “goodbye” to end your cover letter. Popular conclusions include “Best Regards,” “Kind Regards,” “Sincerely,” and “Thank you.”
Cover Letter Examples for Job Applications
Example 1 – Sample Cover Letter for a Job Application
This cover letter includes the job seeker’s qualifications and relevant background information to make them stand out to a potential employer.
Dear (Hiring Manager),
I am writing to apply for the position of veterinary nurse, as advertised on Monster. I am confident that I have the skills and experience necessary to excel in the role and make a positive contribution to the Small Animal Care team in Seattle.
My background and major is in small animal care and I have just returned from a 3-month volunteer placement in Ethiopia with a team carrying out a Trap, Neuter, Release program for dogs in the highlands as well as helping support local animal welfare training. I am passionate about making sure that everyone, whatever their ability to pay, has access to quality care for their pets and so I would love to be a part of your community outreach program to provide free and low-cost pet care for veterans and vulnerable people. I am a people person (as well as a dog person!) and can quickly build rapport and reassure pets and their owners to help keep them calm ahead of treatment.
I am very enthusiastic about the chance to join your team and would be grateful to have the opportunity to discuss my application further. I have attached my resume and I thank you for your consideration.
Example 2 – Academic Cover Letter
This letter is tailored to an academic job application, highlighting the applicant’s research and teaching experience.
Dear (Hiring Manager),
I am writing to apply for the position of associate lecturer, as advertised on the University website. I am confident that I have the skills and experience necessary to excel in the role and make a positive contribution to the Psychology team.
My undergraduate degree was in Clinical Psychology and I was offered the opportunity to do some teaching assistant work in my final year. I have several years of practical experience in New York and Washington DC, as well as an extensive professional network. I have published papers in 14 journals and look forward to continuing to work on cutting-edge research projects. I believe that it’s important to give students at all stages of their undergraduate journey the opportunity to participate in research and learn from as many experienced professionals as possible and I hope to be a part of this at LSU.
I have attached my resume and would be delighted to have the chance to discuss my application further.
Example 3 – Applying for More Than One Job
This cover letter focuses on the job seeker’s transferable skills, making the letter applicable to multiple job openings. Remember that if you are writing an application to be added to a database of workers, for example as a teacher or content creator, potential employers could be sent your application, CV and cover letter.
Dear (Hiring Manager),
I am writing to apply to be added to your teacher database, for EFL teaching positions in Europe. I am confident that I have the skills and experience necessary to excel in any teaching team and make a positive contribution to the school.
With three years of teaching experience in France and Italy as well as a B Grade CELTA qualification and a degree in English, I am an enthusiastic and professional teacher who is able to teach all age groups from kindergarten to adults. I am used to planning and working independently and am happy to cover for colleagues as well as support less experienced teachers, should the need arise. I particularly enjoy acting as MC at school events and performances and have a lot of experience as a team leader for school excursions.
I would be delighted to have the chance to discuss my application further. I have attached my teaching resume and appreciate your consideration.
Example 4 – Letter For Unadvertised Openings
This cover letter proactively reaches out to the potential employer and shows them the job seeker’s enthusiasm and initiative. If you believe that a company you want to join may be hiring soon, this is a good way to let them know you would be a great addition to their team!
Dear (Hiring Manager),
I am writing to enquire whether there may be an upcoming position on the sales team. I have wanted to join Hayward Professionals since working with several of your managers through my current role at Halfards and I am confident that I would be a valuable addition to your team.
With two years of experience in sales support and positive professional relationships with all the wholesalers in the region, I know the market well and believe that joining the Hayward team would be a great next step for me. I’m organised, proactive and never back down from a challenge.
I would be delighted to have the chance to discuss any opportunities you may have, at this time or in the near future. I have attached my resume and would appreciate your consideration.
FAQ- Frequently Asked Questions
Some of these questions were already covered in this blog post but I will still list them here (because not everyone carefully reads every paragraph) so here’s the TL;DR version.
Where can I find extra free Cover Letter templates?
There are hundreds of cover letter examples available online that you can use to create a successful job search. For example, Monster provides a variety of cover letter samples that can be tailored to any type of job application. There are also a number of free cover letter templates available from websites such as Freesumes and GraphicRiver.
How do I write an effective cover letter?
Step 1: Tailor each letter to the job. Take some time to customize your application by writing a unique cover letter for each job. Use the skills and experiences noted in the job posting and relate them to your own.
Step 2: Use keywords. Look for keywords in the job posting and try to use some of them in your letter. This will help the employer quickly identify how your skills and qualifications match the job.
Step 3: Explain how you will add value. Add examples of how you can add value to the company. Include accomplishments from previous jobs, such as reducing customer wait time. This proves you are the best fit for the role.
What information should be included in a cover letter?
Full name, phone number, email, date, name of the hiring manager and their professional title, name of the company you are applying to, and social media profiles relevant to your field or personal website (if applicable).
How long should a cover letter be?
A cover letter should be roughly 250-400 words long. It usually consists of no more than three to five paragraphs and introduces you to the employer, summarizing your professional background. It’s best to keep it brief and to the point, as hiring managers and recruiters are busy people who don’t have time to read through pages of copy.
How can I make my cover letter stand out?
Writing a cover letter that stands out is essential when applying for a job. Here are some tips to make your cover letter stand out:
- Tailor your letter to the job: Take some time to customize your letter to the job you are applying for, making sure to relate your skills and experiences to those noted in the job posting. Use keywords from the job posting to ensure that at a glance, the employer can see that you match the requirements of the job.
- Explain how you will add value: To prove you will add value to the company, include examples of specific accomplishments from previous jobs. Showing how your skills and experience can solve the company’s problems is a great way to make your cover letter stand out.
- Put your personality into it: Use emotion and storytelling to show the employer that you are enthusiastic about the job and have the skills to succeed. There was a great example above – ‘I am a people-person (as well as a dog person!)’ – this is a little joke that also conveys the applicant’s love of animals and their ability to get on well with everyone.
- Make sure your cover letter is clear and well-organised to convey the idea that you are professional.
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