When job hunting, it is imperative to include a cover letter alongside your resume. The cover letter is a one-page document that introduces you to the hiring manager and highlights what makes you an ideal candidate. It also expands on your career history, qualifications, and why you are interested in the role. A powerful cover letter along with a polished resume can set you miles ahead in the job hunt. If well written, it will leave a lasting impression and set you apart from other applicants.
Key elements of a perfect cover letter
- Contact information
At the very top of your cover letter, always include your contact information. Your email address and phone number, optionally a physical address, should be easy to find. Also, ensure your email address is professional to avoid a negative impression.
- Salutation / greeting
Your salutation should address a specific person, starting with “Dear…”. If you don’t know the hiring manager’s name, call, or email the organization. Keeping your greeting short and professional will make you stand out.
- Opening part
Your first paragraph can make or break your chances. Aim for short and concise, but unique enough to capture the reader’s attention. Remember, this is your chance to leave a stellar first impression by summarizing what you can offer the company.
- Middle part
Once you’ve got the hiring manager’s attention, it’s time for your strengths and qualifications. The body of your cover letter should highlight what makes you the ideal candidate, why you chose this company, and what you’re bringing to the table. Here, you want to convince the hiring manager that you would be an invaluable addition to the company.
- Closing part
Your final paragraph should reiterate your main points and conclude the letter. For best results, structure your closing paragraph as an offer. Summarize your strengths, thank the hiring manager for their time, and ask about the next steps.
- Complimentary close and signature.
Unless you have addressed a specific person, use “Yours faithfully” to sign off your cover letter. If you addressed the hiring manager by name, you can end your cover letter with “Yours sincerely.” Always include a copy of your signature and your full name at the end of your cover letter.
Cover letter examples
Entry-level cover letter
If you have limited work experience, you may be applying to entry-level jobs. Coincidentally, an entry-level cover letter is the best way for recent graduates to find their place in the job market. Including a well-written cover letter in your application can set you apart from other candidates and help you get your first job.
The cover letter sample below illustrates the relevant skills and qualifications. Participation in school clubs, volunteering, and internships can all be included in an entry-level cover letter. To impress the hiring manager and boost your chances of landing an interview, describe your knowledge and skills in detail.
The entry-level cover letter example
Career change cover letter
When changing careers, your cover letter should highlight relevant experience and transferable skills. Even if you don’t have any experience in the field, you should illustrate what makes your unique skills valuable. You can do this by focusing on your soft skills, like in the cover letter example below.
Altogether, a career change cover letter should express your excitement and readiness to learn. Also, it should highlight relevant professional successes and achievements. When describing these, include the skills you used to attain them and how they could apply to your new position.
The career change cover letter example
Manager cover letter
When writing a management cover letter, you should focus on your leadership skills. Primarily, your cover letter should outline your biggest strengths in managerial positions. In the cover letter example below, you can see these listed in bullet point form.
Instead of repeating your resume, focus on quantifiable and specific accomplishments. These may include reducing employee turnover or successfully onboarding new employees. Finally, a management cover letter should demonstrate the value you can bring to the company.
Manager cover letter example
Teacher cover letter
As a teacher, your cover letter should emphasize your biggest achievements and how they helped your students. You should focus on quantifiable achievements. For example, you may include the state test scores your students earned or awards you have received. You can also mention student feedback like in the cover letter example below. Finally, if the job requires specific certifications, include these in your cover letter.
For a teacher cover letter, you should research the school you are applying to. Then, tailor your cover letter to the location and school district. If relevant, also mention why you are suited to work in this location. If you have limited experience, including volunteer experience or casual jobs where you worked with children.
Teacher cover letter example
Cover letter templates
A cover letter is all about making a great first impression and giving your job application the best chance of making progress.
We have developed templates to make it easier to craft the perfect cover letter in no time. Use them as a starting point to write your cover letter to stand out from a sea of applicants and get your application noticed.
If you’re wondering where to find inspiration for cover letter examples and cover letter templates, look no further. Pinterest, with millions of pins, is the best source for your inspiration. In the Pinterest search bar, use the hashtags #CoverLetter, #CoverLetterExamples, #CoverLetterTemplates,or #CoverLetterDesigns.