How To Write a Great Cover Letter
Hiring Managers often have hundreds of cover letters to sift through during the hiring process. Candidates have merely seconds to make a good impression and influence the Hiring Manager to keep on reading. A cover letter is arguably the most important part of the application process as it gives the Hiring Manager insight into who you are and why they should choose you as a potential employee.
The infamous cover letter has long intimidated people who are unsure what to write. Some people copy and paste overused phrases and entire paragraphs, while others might write boring or irrelevant information. We are here to help those of you who are struggling with your cover letter, and hopefully after reading our tips, you will be well on your way to constructing the kind of cover letter that gets you straight to the top of the pile.
We can't emphasize the importance of being yourself enough. While we are not encouraging you to write about your love of fantasy football when you are applying for a Pharmacist position, we are encouraging you to subtly give hiring managers a glimpse of your personality. Consider how boring it must be to sift through hundreds of mundane and predictable cover letters. Be careful to remain focused on the job you are applying for though. Talk about personal experiences and how they relate to the position you are applying for.
Customize, customize, customize!
Cover letters should be tailored for each position you apply for. Don't think Hiring Managers don't realize when you send them a generic cover letter that makes barely any mention of job specifics or the company you are applying to. Doing your research makes such a difference and really sets you apart from the rest. We encourage you to take the time to find out who the Hiring Manager is and address them directly. Communicate why you want to join the company and why you think you're a good fit for the position. Specificity shows your ability to be thoughtful and prepared.
Please, please, please do not click send until you have thoroughly proof-read your cover letter and resume! Nothing ruins your chances of impressing the Hiring Manager more than submitting a cover letter with grammatical, structural, or factual errors. These errors are red flags that you might do less than stellar work. Even though we all know that even bright and intelligent humans are capable of error, a cover letter is one place you really want to keep error-free. So put in the additional few minutes to make sure your “to” isn't a “too”, if you know what I mean!
Keep it brief and to the point!
Hiring Managers are busy people, and while you may think your cover letter is exceptionally entertaining, chances are they would prefer you just get to the point. Why are you a great fit for the position at hand, and how do you intend on making a difference at the company? You can effectively communicate why you are the best choice for the job without writing a novel. If you need to have someone else read it to let you know how it reads, that's always a good idea.