In a job market that’s still a bit stale it’s more important than ever to make yourself stand out from the pack, and a fantastic cover letter is your first step to doing just that. A cover letter’s importance really can’t be understated, considering that is your initial introduction to the employer that you’re trying to impress. First impressions essentially mean more than anything else in practically all aspects of social interaction, and a job interview is no different.
With your cover letter there are a few guidelines you want to follow. First, stay on topic, an employer only really cares about what you can offer them, and how your experience and past qualities applies to them. You want to personalize the letter, never send a form cover letter as these can be easily spotted, and your lack of a personal touch will reflect negatively upon yourself. If you won’t put in the time and effort to write a good cover letter, how much time and effort are you going to put into the job once you are hired?
Never forget that the goal of a cover letter is to introduce yourself and then sell yourself and your unique abilities to the company with which you are applying. Your cover letter is practically an interview in itself, and you should treat it as such. Really sell yourself as the best candidate for the job, even if you yourself feel yourself to be under qualified. Never suggest that you feel that way however, nor should you defend your lack of experience in any way, as that will make you seem to lack confidence in your abilities, and you’ll appear on the defensive about the likelihood that you’ll get the job, and that’s never good.
Express the interests you have in the company that you’re applying to, and outline why you would like to work for them. Give specific reasons tailored to the company. But make sure always that your cover letter is in a business tone, shy away from using any humor as that usually doesn’t come off well, and make sure that there are absolutely no grammar mistakes. Grammar or spelling mistakes are horrifically bad for the first impression of the company you are applying to, and will be a red flag to any employer that you don’t double check your work.