most job requirements request for a letter of application or cover letter along with your resume. This letter is equally important because it formally signifies your intent to apply for the position. In fact, employers usually read your letter before going through your resume. That’s why your letter of application must be carefully made, so that the job recruiter has a positive impression about you after reading it.
Most local employers usually give some information (name of person and company) for applicants in making cover letters. However, other than that, you’re usually on your own in making your letter.
A good letter of application include the following, usually in the following order:
- Date – the date you made the letter
- Name, title, and company address of recipient
- Main body of letter
- Closing – sincerely yours, truly yours
- Signature over printed name
- Address and contact numbers – you could place this on the top of the letter, usually in the center portion
The most important thing in your letter is the main body. Apart from your resume, it helps the employer assess what kind of applicant you really are. A long and wordy letter could mean you’re not worth interviewing, but concise, direct-to-the-point letter could mean that you’re worth that precious interview.
Thus, when writing your letter, keep in mind the following:
Keep your main body generally to two or three paragraphs – The first paragraph describes your interest in the position and why you want it, while the second and third paragraphs gives a brief idea about your skills, abilities and capacities. Each paragraph should generally have only around 2-3 sentences each.
Give a dynamic introductory sentence – Instead of the usually “I would like to apply for…”, you can start of with “I read with interest your advertisement about your need for a forklift safety trainor…?
Show your knowledge about the company you’re applying for or the line of business it engages in. – This is not just to impress the job interviewer, this also shows your knowledge about the work you’re interested in. If the company is one of the top 500 corporation, then perhaps you could say something like “I would like to work with a company regarded as one of the country’s top 500…”
Describe what you can offer, not only what you want from them - State what you can offer to the company in terms of skills and services. You may also add how it can be an asset to the company.