Chapter 3 - How to write a Cover Letter in 2022: Tips & Template


A cover letter is a one-page document addressed to a recruiter which includes vital information about you such as your contact details, the job position you are applying for and further details regarding your CV. It is traditionally attached to a resume or CV, and should be tailored according to the situation at hand. Cover letters should be written in a tone that is direct, unassuming, and conveys enthusiasm.
First impression is the last impression. Your cover letter is your initial opportunity to engage a prospective employer. Thus, it should align your qualifications, relevant skills and previous experience clearly to the job description to emphasize that you have done your research into the role and are keen to join the team.

Cover Letter versus Curriculum Vitae:

A cover letter is different from a CV (Curriculum Vitae) in a way that a cover letter is a more concise and crisp document whereas a curriculum vitae is a fairly detailed one. A cover letter is a shorter piece of writing that expresses interest in the position being applied for, whereas a CV contains extensive information on a person's educational history and professional experience.

Cover Letter:

In a cover letter, you introduce yourself in relation to the position you're applying for. Most cover letters consist of only one page, including a header, introduction, content, and closure. It provides general information about the applicant, such as name, contact information, educational and professional background, employment history, and career objectives or desired job profiles. The cover letter has to be detailed enough to match the curriculum vitae and pique the reader's attention.

Curriculum Vitae:

A cover letter and other relevant information may be included in a curriculum vitae when applying for jobs abroad, fellowships, grants, research opportunities and/ot academic posts. A curriculum vitae is generally of two or less pages which shall provide enough room to display your experiences and achievements with justice, while also refraining from overwhelming the prospective employer.

How to write the perfect Cover Letter: step by step guide!

The following are some steps which will help you write your perfect cover letter!
  • Start by listing your name and address:
    You should write your name and address at a place which is clearly visible such as either at the top of your cover letter or simply list each piece of information on a new line oriented to the left-hand side of the page. This information should not cover more than 2-3 lines.
  • Include the date:
    Write the date on you are sending the letter. The date line should be separated from your address and the recipient’s address.
  • List the recipient’s name and address:
    After the date, mention the recipient’s name and address. You can find these details by looking at the company’s website or the Job Description provided to you. This information should not cover more than 2-3 lines.
  • Open with an introduction:
    The beginning of the cover letter is the most crucial part. Always start with a formal salutation such as ‘Greetings!’ or ‘Salutations!’
  • Include an opening paragraph about your intent to apply::
    Go on to write an introductory paragraph that includes the position you are applying for and include a statement about your enthusiasm in regards to the role and company. Research your position, prospective employer and the company thoroughly to make an impact.
  • Write a second paragraph about your background:
    In the second paragraph write a brief overview of your background as is relevant to the position. Here, you should include key achievements, skills and specialities that make you particularly suited for the position. Pay close attention to keywords listed in the job description and include those that you identify with within the body of your cover letter. You should only include information about your most recent (one or two) professional experiences.
  • Focus on another reason why you are qualified in the next paragraph:
    Next paragraph should focus on another key achievement or skill that is relevant to the position. Instead of repeating details from your resume, expand on specific stories or anecdotes that display your fitness for the role briefly.
  • Conclude with reasons why you are uniquely qualified:
    The last paragraph should recap the reasons you are applying for the role and why they should pick you among the crowd. Keep the conclusion brief and explain that you look forward to hearing from the employer.
  • End with your signature:
    Finally, sign your name after a closing line like ‘Best,’ or ‘Sincerely,’.

How to submit your cover letter?

In today's business world attaching a cover letter a norm as part of an online job/internship application. Follow the below mentioned steps to submit your cover letter correctly
  • Follow company instructions:
    Before sending your cover letter, check the company’s job application guidelines.Keep in mind that if you don’t follow the employer’s instructions, your application may not be considered.
  • Use a professional email address:
    When submitting a cover letter via email, your email address matters. Use a professional email address made up of your first and last name.
  • Add an informative subject line:
    A simple, descriptive subject line increases the chances of a recruiter opening your email. Employers may be hiring for multiple positions so it’s important to be able to quickly identify the position you’ve applied for.
  • Send your cover letter as an email attachment:
    Some companies automatically block emails with attachments to prevent computer viruses, so attach a cover letter to emails only if your job posting specifically requires it.
  • Save your file correctly as a doc or pdf to preserve the original appearance of your cover letter:
    At times when we send the cover letter without saving it as a document or pdf, it changes the orientation and the outlook of the whole cover letter. Hence, always save your file as a document or pdf.
  • Include a brief email message:
    Write a simple message in the body of the email to let the hiring manager know you’ve attached your cover letter.
  • Send your cover letter as the body of an email:
    Make sure that you send your cover letter as a body of the same email and not separately or attached to some other document.
  • Include an email signature:
    Don’t forget to add the proper email signature to close your email and make it easy for the hiring manager to get in touch with you.
  • Send yourself a test email:
    Send yourself a test message to make sure the attachment is working correctly before you click send. Download the attachment from the test email to ensure it’s the correct file, double check the spelling, grammar and then send the final cover letter to your hiring manager.

Do’s and Don’ts:

As someone new in the industry, a cover letter can be a new concept. Here are few Do’s and Don’ts that will help you avoid common mistakes and get an edge over other applicants and help you bag your dream job:

  • Explain how you’ll be an asset to the company. Elaborate on the skills and experience listed in your resume. Connect/relate them to the job in which you apply and explain how you can achieve the astounding results with the company.
  • Research the company before writing the cover letter.
  • Include specific keywords.Resumes with a certain number of preferred keywords are ranked higher and resumes with few or no keywords are discarded. Read job descriptions and job postings and look for repeated words. Once you’ve identified them, use the words frequently in your cover letter.
  • Ask someone to review your cover letter. Having another person go through your work increases the chances of identifying and solving any grammar issues.
  • Include new content in your cover letter. Use your cover letter as a means to share more about yourself, your skills and your accomplishments.
  • Don’t submit generic cover letters. Many job seekers submit generic cover letters to save time, just swapping out a few details for each new position. By doing this, you’re missing out on a great opportunity to connect with employers.
  • Don’t write more than one page. Reading a multi-page cover letter may seem tedious to the recruiter and can negatively impact their opinion of you as a candidate.
  • Don't mention any negative comments/articles. If you find news articles or other undesirable information, do not include it in your cover letter. Get an overview of the company and focus on the positive information.
  • Don't submit an unedited cover letter. Your cover letter is your first impression. If your letter includes any misspelled words or grammatical errors, it gives the company a negative impression of you.