One of our readers asked: “Any good sites that can help with writing a cover letter?”
In this post I try to answer the question in the most informative way possible. Before going for the website names, let me tell you the three general rules of writing a cover letter.
In a Cover Letter, tell them you want the job!
I have read cover letters from applicants where the candidate has good qualities and the letter is well written, but does not mention that the author needs the job. Do not assume that the cover letter means you need the job – you have to mention that in the letter.
Cover Letters showcase your knowledge, not just credentials – research!
Having written a few cover letters myself, and seen other examples, I believe good cover letters are those which are written demonstrating very good research on the organisation and the job. You cannot write a good cover letter with half information.
Cover Letters are not generic!
A cover letter is not generic, do not copy-paste paragraphs from one cover letter to another and change the employer name. It is good practice to start every new cover letter on a fresh page. You can have up to 3 mistakes in an online application, a mistake on your CV might be overlooked in the bulk of information, but any mistake on a cover letter is unacceptable.
Further help with writing a Cover Letter
- Kent University careers department has put together this webpage on writing a successful cover letter.
Writing a Successful Cover Letter (credit: University of Kent, Careers Advisory Service)
- WIKIJOB has useful resources on helping graduates write a good cover letter, along with examples.
Resources for Writing Cover Letter (credit: WIKIJOB)
FAQ’s about Cover Letters
When should I send a covering letter? (credit: University of Leicester, Careers Service)
What should a covering letter include? (credit: University of Leicester, Careers Service)
How should a covering letter be laid out? (credit: University of Leicester, Careers Service)
Tips to remember (credit: University of Leicester, Careers Service)
Examples (credit: University of Leicester, Careers Service)