A well-written cover letter should complement your resume and will help paint a more complete picture of who you are as a person and candidate. Each cover letter should be specific to the position you are applying for, therefore there are no generic cover letters! When writing a cover letter make sure you write it from the employer’s perspective, i.e. what unique contributions are you going to bring to the job/company. Try to keep your letter to one page and include at least 3 paragraphs.
Different Types of Cover Letters:
Application Letter: You are applying for a job you saw advertised. In this case you can use the job description to help draw a connection between what the company is looking for and your unique skills and experiences.
Prospecting Letter: In this case there is not an open job requisition, but you are interested in working for that company. You will need to highlight your unique contributions. In your concluding paragraph, you will need to make mention to the next step and be prepared to take matters into your own hands.
Networking Letter: Your main objective is to draw a specific connection between you and the reader. Make sure to mention this connection early on in the cover letter. The rest of the letter should be written as a prospecting letter.
Cover Letter Basics
Distinguish yourself by addressing your cover letter to a specific individual if possible. Call or visit the company to get the appropriate person’s name and title.
See the Career Development Guide for Cover Letter examples.