What is a Cover Letter?

A cover letter is a special letter to an employer or organization where you are applying for the job. Its main purpose is to convey the employer why are you suitable for this job. This letter is sent along with the resume or CV. Many people don’t know exactly what is a cover letter and why is it an important document.

The cover letter is an important document you must attach along with a resume or CV while applying for a job. You can’t miss this letter unless it is not necessary according to the job advertisement. A well-written cover letter decides whether an employer read your resume or not. Depending upon this you may or may not be called for an interview.

Writing a good cover letter is an art. The more you write the more you get expertise in it. The main aim of the cover letter is to give brief information about yourself, how your skills matching the job description and what can you do for this job position. One has to convince the employer simply by words. It provides one’s first impression in front of the employer.

Types of Cover letter

There are many types of cover letter such as

  1. Application Cover letter
  2. Prospecting Cover letter
  3. Networking Cover letter
  4. Non-Cover letter

Lets discuss each type one by one.

Application Cover letter

In an application cover letter, one will send to the employer or hiring manager for a specific job position that is published in an advertisement or you may know from some referral. In such a letter, one can explain how the required skills are matching with his/her skills.

Prospecting Cover letter

In a prospecting cover letter, one will enquire about the job position vacancy available in the company of his/her interest. This is not a particular job post as in application cover letter.

Networking Cover letter

In networking cover letter, one writes to the person he/she know in order to tell them that he/she is a job seeker. This is how one connects with friends, former colleges, mentors, etc. and seek help in getting a job. This letter is the shortest one among the above two.

Non-Cover letter

This is not exactly a cover letter but a quick casual way to convey one’s message when no cover letter is asked to send. This is generally sent by e-mail. This includes greetings, small paragraphs explaining about one’s skills and experience and the closing statement. Also include any attachment like resume or CV or portfolio, etc.

Why is a cover letter important?

A cover letter helps a person to stand out from a crowd. Many people apply for the job position but recruiters reject those who haven’t any cover letter attached (unless it is mentioned that cover letter is non-mandatory).

What should a cover letter include?

Mere having the cover letter doesn’t guarantee one’s selection. It needs to be properly formatted and have the following information in a well-explained manner.

  • job seeker phone number and e-mail.
  • employer or recruiter name.
  • explain why are you a suitable candidate for this job vacancy.
  • explain how are you a valuable asset for the company growth.
  • end with the closing statement.

Difference between CV and Cover letter

CV (curriculum vitae) is a document which includes a lot of information about a person’s whereas the cover letter includes brief information specific to the applied post.

A CV can be of several pages whereas a cover letter confined to a single page.

A CV contains the person’s academic qualifications, work experience, projects done, hobbies, skills, languages known, family member details, research grant, internships, training, courses, local address, publications, workshops attended, conferences attended, thesis, dissertation (if any), etc. whereas a cover letter contains an only brief introduction and the reason why are the job seeker is a suitable candidate for this job.

A CV contains information in bullets and lists whereas a cover letter contains sentences and paragraph.

A CV contains contains facts and data about person’s work experience whereas a cover letters contains examples of expertise or skills matching with the company requirement.

A CV is mostly used in academic, research or scientific positions whereas a cover letter is vastly used in non-academic jobs.

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