The Complete Guide: What Is a Cover Letter for a Job in 2021?

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Table of contents

What Is a Cover Letter for a Resume?

What to include?

Cover Letter Types

Wrapping Up

When planning to apply for a job, an applicant needs to wrap up all his work experience, accomplishments, and skills in a professional job application. However, only having a bot-beating resume is not enough to impress recruiting firms and potential employers. To jump-start your career, you also need a killer cover letter.

If you’re wondering what is cover letter, it is a document that complements your resume and introduces your personality to a recruiter, meanwhile demonstrating what makes you a perfect candidate.

In this article, we’ll help you understand what is a cover letter for jobs and why it matters.

What Is a Cover Letter for a Resume?

What is the purpose of a cover letter? In short, its purpose is to help you land an interview. Though it’s sometimes optional, a cover letter has many benefits. It dives into details you can’t provide in your resume, helping you show your full potential to employers.

Simply put, good cover letter examples boost the likelihood of you getting employed faster. Every career advice expert will confirm that companies are more likely to hire humans who attach a solid cover letter to their applications. That’s why it makes perfect sense to put in the extra effort to write a good cover letter.

What to Include in Your Cover Letter?

One of the biggest puzzles job seekers face is what should be in a cover letter. It indeed can be compared to a puzzle. The best cover letter examples are made up of tiny bits that, once put together in a proper manner, shape the whole.

So, what is included in a cover letter? Every solid document should contain the following:

Opening

Great creative cover letter opening sentence examples include a hook, focusing on the company that may potentially employ you or on a relevant professional accomplishment. If it drives the recruiter’s attention and relates to the job, it will work!

Example:

I have long been inspired by Company X’s exceptional web development projects, so I was excited to discover a newly-opened position for a Web Developer. I believe I can be a valuable addition to the Company X team.

Stunning Pitch

Next, all cover letter examples for job should include a pitch explaining what makes you right for the job.

Example:

In my current role as a Web Developer at Company Y, I gained hands-on experience developing user-friendly applications and websites. One of the recent projects I’ve worked on was an application for an event management agency for which I managed to:

  • Reduce the time-to-market time by 15%
  • Help the client boost their event signups by 40%
  • Ensure the excellent user experience

Closing Line

The last element in your examples of a cover letter should be a clear, friendly, and effective closing statement with a formal thank you for time and a call to action that encourages the hiring manager to contact you.

Example:

Thank you for considering my application. I would be happy to discuss your company’s Web Development challenges and show how my skills and knowledge can help solve them. Please reach me via email (name.lastname@gmail.com) or phone (000-000-0000).

Other Essential Things to Include in Cover Letter

Additionally, all great cover letter examples should include one more thing - a brief, sincere explanation of your motivation to join a particular company.

Example:

One thing I’m impressed with the most about Company X is how you foster creativity and thinking outside the box. I am an old fan of your team’s projects and, thus, it would be a dream come true to join in. I also appreciate the friendly and open-minded atmosphere inside your team and share your company’s values.

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What Cover Letter Types Are There?

Now that you know what is a cover letter for resume, you also need to know that there are multiple types of this document.

Below, we will give a small intro on each type to help you see the difference.

Application Cover Letter

An application cover letter is used when you have a specific job in mind. It typically addresses the recruitment professional and is submitted with a resume. The goal of the application cover letter is to show what makes you an ideal candidate for the job and help land an interview.

Example:

I’ve long been interested in the business activity of Company X. I’m excited for the opportunity to apply for the Graphic Designer position with your company and confident I could be a perfect asset.

Referral Cover Letter

This kind of cover letter should be used by a candidate who was referred to a job. If that’s your case, you should indicate the full name of your referral within the first few lines of your referral cover letter in order to drive the attention of the hiring manager.

Example:

[Referral’s Name], head of sales at Company X, suggested that I get in touch with you directly concerning my interest in applying for the role of Web Developer in your company.

Letter of Interest

A letter of interest is perfect for the occasions when you are interested in working with a certain company that may not currently have any job postings. It’s used to let the organization know about your interest so that they would keep you in mind as a potential employee. See the letter of interest example below.

Example:

I have been long monitoring Company X’s innovative projects and would like to inquire whether you have any Web Development positions open.

Networking Cover Letter

Unlike other types, a networking cover letter doesn’t necessarily address a recruiter but rather any professional contact you’ve made through industry events, social media, past jobs, etc. It is written to ask for open positions, referrals, or job search advice.

Example:

First, congratulations on completing your project with Company X last month. I found it extremely innovative and interesting! I’m writing to express my admiration and ask for job search advice as I am now looking for a new career opportunity.

Prospecting Cover Letter

A prospecting cover letter is used to express your desire to work with a company due to the certain features it has, for example, an excellent reputation on the job market, outstanding culture, etc. It is used to get into that company’s talent pool.

Example:

After hearing your CEO’s speech at the TED conference, I was impressed to discover your unique culture that keeps talent and creativity at the core and would love to become a part of your Web Development team.

Value Proposition Letter

The last type of cover letter is used to apply for a position by showing what value you can add to a company. Basically, a value proposition letter is like a resume summary that tells about your professionalism, experience, and level of qualification.

Example:

Do you need an experienced Web Developer with an excellent sense of trends?

As a developer with 5+ years of experience and 200+ completed projects, I believe I could bring real value to Company X’s development team.

Wrapping Up

Hopefully, after reading this article, you have a better understanding of what is cover letter.

Let’s quickly recap the key points:

  • A cover letter is a document that supplements your job application by providing additional details that are not given in a resume;
  • There are 6 different types of cover letters that serve different purposes;
  • Applicants should have a good cover letter to get more interviews and land a job faster and easier;
  • Cover letters consist of the opening statement, pitch, and closing line;
  • A perfect cover letter should be to-the-point, professional, and use the right tone of voice.

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