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Forty-nine percent of hiring managers say that including a cover letter with your resume is the key to landing an interview. By using JobHero’s vast selection of cover letter examples, you can see what you need to include and how to portray your work history to ensure that you stand out above other candidates. Our library includes hundreds of examples for every job title and plenty of professional advice that will help you win the job.

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3 Key Cover Letter Tips

1 Tell a
Story

Your resume should contain all the detailed information about your work history like where you worked and when. Your cover letter should complement that information by telling a story about that experience.

Consider any recent impact that you’ve made at past jobs and try to incorporate notable achievements into your cover letter. Tell the story of the problem you faced, how you addressed it and the successful results that followed.

Here’s an example, “When I began my tenure at the HR department of Jones and Welsch, lowering overhead was a priority. Through hard research, I found multiple new vendors from which to source office supplies resulting in a 17% decrease in overhead costs.”

In addition to offering a sense of who you are as a person, this will give an employer a much better impression of who you are as an employee and the determination you show to tackle important issues.

2 Pepper Your
Cover Letter
with Skills

Even if you choose to include a skills section on your resume, your cover letter should be a chance to explain how you use those skills on the job.

Read the language of the job posting very carefully — it’s full of keywords that describe what an employer wants. In your cover letter, echo back the key skills they’re seeking if they apply to you. Include the skills necessary to perform the job in a way that shows you are able to rise and perform the duties needed.

Do more than just list a skill, elaborate a bit on the importance of the skill to your success. Spin it as a positive achievement in your cover letter.

For instance, if you want to talk about your cash-handling skills, don’t just mention it. Say something like, “My skills in cash handling ensured that my drawer was always returned at the end of my shift with every last penny accounted for.”

If you want to make sure you nail your cover letter, check out our full guide on how to write a cover letter.

3 The Last Sentence
is as Important
as the First
Sentence

A cover letter is meant to be a tool that you can use to impress employers. Certain parts of it may be due to formality, like listing your contact information or mentioning the specific job title to which you’re applying. However, it’s essential that you make sure that everything in your cover letter is on point.

Make sure you read over your cover letter to be sure that it flows well. Double- and triple-check it to make sure that it is free from grammar errors or spelling mistakes.

The point is that a cover letter will help you so long as it’s good. Be sure that it doesn’t just contain a good line or two. You should be able to read it off in entirety and feel confident about the way you’re presenting yourself.

2 Keys to Selecting a Cover Letter Template

Templates are a great tool to use to speed up the application process. A template is a preformatted document that helps you write your cover letter faster because it takes care of the design elements. All you have to do is select one that looks good.

That said, there are a couple important things to consider when selecting a template that’s right for you.

1

Consider Your Profession

The job that you’re applying for should determine the template that you choose.

For instance, if you’re applying to a job that’s in a traditional field like medicine, law or finance, you should select a traditional and basic template.

On the other hand, if you’re in a more creative field like graphic design or art direction, you might want to use a cover letter template that has more pizzazz to show your dedication to your craft.

2

Select an Industry-Appropriate Template

It’s always good practice to consider the specific company that you’re applying to when trying to pick the best template to present yourself.

If it’s a company that values creativity and vision, like Google for example, choose something that excites. But if it’s a company that seems to have traditional values, don’t get ahead of yourself. Play it safe.

Cover Letter FAQ

Should I Include a Cover Letter if it’s Not Requested?

Yes, even if not requested it’s always best practice to include a cover letter.

The most important reason: Including a cover letter without being asked shows an employer you cover all the bases. It indicates that you’re prepared, thoughtful and eager for the job.

Those are qualities that resonate with all employers — regardless of industry.

Beyond that, a cover letter offers you more space to make the argument that you deserve the job. Use that opportunity to your benefit.

The only way that including a cover letter could hurt you is if you don’t make the effort to write a good letter or if you submit one that is littered with errors, untruths or typos. Be sure what you’re putting forth is a flawless representation of your best qualities.

The only exception to this rule is in the rare circumstance that it is explicitly stated not to include a cover letter.

What Do You Write in a Cover Letter in 2020?

The goal of a cover letter hasn’t changed over time: Write a letter that explains to an employer why you make a great candidate for the job. Tell a story of your past job experience. Make a convincing case for the skills you possess.

While a resume serves as the bullet points of your career, the cover letter is the story of your career. So it’s essential you add some flourish to facts about your career and try to weave it into a narrative.

Of course, in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, you may be looking for a job in a new line of work, one in which you don’t have a lot of experience.

In that case, use your cover letter as a chance to point out the work experience you find to be the most relevant to tackling a new type of job role. Try to consider the common skills that you may have performed at a past job that may align with the job you are applying to.

Then, your goal is to tell a brief story of how you implemented those common skills in your past role to achieve success for the company.

If you’re looking for even more information about what to include in your cover letter or how to include it, check out our ultimate guide to writing cover letters.

What Are the Main Types of Cover Letters?

Although a vast majority of cover letters have the same goal — to help get you a job — there can be a lot of nuance on how you approach that goal depending on the situation.

For instance, some cover letters are written in direct response to job postings. Other positions might be for unadvertised positions, cold calls inquiries, a transfer or promotion, a change from a temporary to a permanent position, a cover letter for referral, or a cover letter to make a career change.

In essence, the purpose for which you’re writing your cover letter shouldn’t change its overall content too much. You’re still making the case for why you deserve a chance to achieve a new role.

However, in the first body paragraph of your cover letter it’s essential that you state the exact position that you’re applying for, note any connections or company endorsements if applicable, and then give your most brief explanation for why you would be a good fit for the role.

Explain right at the beginning of your letter in a clear way your interest in a position, how and why you came to develop that interest, and why you should be the candidate.

What Is the Best Format for a Cover Letter?

Here’s a bit of good news: Even though there are different types of cover letters, there is really only one format to use and it’s easy to follow.

All cover letters are going to follow this format: Your name and contact information is going to be at the top or top right of the page.

Underneath that, you’re going to list the addressee’s information.

Then you’ll have your salutation to start off.

After that is the body of the letter, the most important part. This is where you’ll be writing about all of your experience and making the strongest case possible for why you’re a great candidate for the job.

Below that, you’ll have the body of your letter followed by your signature. If in the event that you have any attachments such as a portfolio, list them below your signature.

About Our Cover Letter Examples

At JobHero, we take our duty to help people apply for jobs seriously.

That’s why our staff is certified by the Professional Association of Resume Writers and Career Coaches (PAWR/CC) to be certain that we’re giving the best possible advice to you.

All of our cover letter examples have been carefully selected to show the best practices and relevant items to include for every industry.

We stay up to date on hiring trends and perform research to be the best at what we do. Why? You deserve it.