- Writing utensil
- A computer with a blank document open
First thing is first: you must have a greeting. This is usually in the format of “Dear _____,”. If you know the name of the recruiter then address them as such and include a proper title (Dr., Mr., Ms., etc.). If you do not know who will be reviewing your application and cover letter then it is best to generalize and simply put “Dear Hiring Manager,” or “Dear Recruitment Team,”.
Tell them who you are, what position and what company you are referring to. It’s also pretty cool to mention where you heard about them or if you were referred by one of their employees, tell them who. This is best to mention within the first couple of sentences as it sets up the background for the rest of the letter. In the next sentence or two you want to list at least three skills you possess that you believe makes you most qualified for this specific position within their company. It helps if you’ve done some research into company values as well as knowing what the position entails for this, as you will want to use keywords that will jump out to the hirer. This will be you first paragraph.
In your middle paragraphs (either set up as one large paragraph or one paragraph per skill set) you will want to bring up each skill individually, let them know how you feel it applies to the position you’re applying for, where you learned the skill. Don’t be shy, don’t be humble. You’re supposed to be showcasing yourself and putting yourself ahead of the other applicants. This will be the body of your letter.
Your conclusion paragraph sums up why the position attracted your attention (a good work environment, opportunity for advancement, etc.), reiterate why you are the best candidate for the position in question. Make sure you not only leave contact information, but you also thank them for their time, and mention that you look forward to hearing back from them. If the application has been filled out or your resume has been included, mention that as well.
“Best Wishes,” or “Sincerely,” are best, but any closing statement with formality is nice to see and shows you were actually taught how to format letters back in grade school. If you are emailing the cover letter type out your full legal name below and send it as is. If you are delivering the cover letter by hand it is best to leave a gap between your closer and your name so you may sign the letter with a pen.