Applying for a Job – Covering Letter

Writing an impeccable CV is not enough. Also handing over or sending only CV indicates wrong signals to potential employer The employer may consider the candidate is desperate for a job or habitual in making applications for a higher salary and he or she may not be loyal to the organization.

Looking for a job is a difficult task in itself and even though an impressive CV should land its owner a job that he wishes to have, there are other elements like a striking first impression, a notable job interview and impressive covering letter that completes the process. With the power to make or break your job search, the cover letter accompanying your resume is one of the most important tools you must possess, during your search for employment.

A well written covering letter that successfully highlights your distinctive skills and accomplishments and illustrates your potential value to the employer is what will give you a competitive edge over other candidates. On the other hand a poorly written letter communicates a lot to the prospective employer, but regrettably the message that is sent is not the one you want. In short the covering letter must highlight your qualifications, distinctive skills, contributions to the organizations you worked for but all in brief.
Applying with a poorly organized cover letter that looks unprofessional or that is filled with grammatical punctuation and spelling errors a message that you are a faltering and confused individual who is unable to communicate clearly and convey a proper meaning.

So, what exactly is the role of a cover letter? A cover letter is the first touch point for a prospective employer to understand the context of the applicant applying for a role. Instead of going through the entire resume in detail the cover letter helps the employer understand the candidates in brief. The cover letter should be short and precise. What one should cover is the role for which the candidate is applying, brief profile of the candidate, work and any noticeable highlights and most importantly the areas where there is a match between the applicant and the role he wishes to apply for. Writing a cover letter is an art and brevity is a premium; it conveys the entire candidature at a glance.

While writing a cover letter, keep the following things in mind to make it good in appearance:

  • Your cover letter is visually attractive. You can assure this, by using quality paper and envelopes. In case of a soft copy, you can use a stylish font with the page template and appropriate colour highlights.
  • It is essential that you take the time to personalize each letter. A letter addressed to “Whom it May Concern” will almost always be tossed aside. Do a little investigative work to learn the name and title of the person who has the hiring power in the company. Many times, you can obtain this information by simply making a two-minute phone call to the company or by spending a little time on the company’s official websites. If, despite your best efforts, you cannot obtain the name of the hiring authority try “Dear HR Manager” or “Dear Recruiting Manager”.
  • Your cover letter is a personal marketing document. As with any other marketing document, the purpose is to grab the reader’s attention while emphasizing the most attractive benefits of the product. Your letter must promote you to the employer by highlighting your achievements and accomplishments.
  • No employer cares for unnecessary praise or ideas, cover letters that defeat the entire process in itself. Make certain, that your cover letter is an original one and is a detailed introduction of you and does not bring to light ambiguous traits that everyone possesses.

Some of the upsides of sending in your cover letter alongside the CV are:

A well written cover letter demonstrates one’s communication skills and clarity of thoughts which are very important for a person in any position. These days business transactions and negotiations are done mostly through email and other modern means of communication. Good cover letters help organizations convey the right message in an effective way which does not leave any scope for ambiguity or doubt. When applying for a job, make sure to write a cover letter that is as striking as it is true.

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