Having a great cover letter is your first step towards getting hired. It is the initial evaluation of your skills, your resume, and yourself as an employee and a person.
Having a great cover letter is your first step to getting hired. It is the initial evaluation of your skills, your CV, and you as a worker and as a person. A cover letter is a letter that you send to accompany your CV when you apply for job. The important thing in the cover letter is to show that your skills match those for the job advert. It shows your motivation, commitment and relevant skills. A cover letter introduces you and your CV to potential employers or organizations you seek to join. It is the first document an employer sees, so it is often the first impression you will make. Take advantage of this important first impression and prepare the reader for your application, stating why you are writing, why you are a good match for the job and the organization, and when you will contact him or her.
The cover letter should focus more on the employer, in contrast to the CV, which focuses on you. Sending your CV without a cover letter is like saying you only care about your needs rather than the employers’. Your cover letter should be designed specifically for each position you seek. Do not design a generic standard letter and send it to every potential employer. A personalized, targeted, well-written cover letter is your chance to attract the employer for a closer look. A cover letter should complement, not duplicate, your CV. Its purpose is to interpret the data-oriented, factual CV and add a personal touch. It should explain your experiences in a story-like format that works with the information provided in your CV. Effective cover letters explain the reasons for your interest in the specific organization and identify your most relevant skills or experiences, and how these skills are matching to the required skill set, or in other words, matching the employer needs with your qualifications. They should also express a high level of interest and knowledge about the position.
Despite that fact that some employers may not read cover letters, they remain an essential document in the job search. You have to write a great cover letter because you have to assume that some of the recipients will pay attention to it. Be sure to make yours as good as possible. At the end first impressions are everything, and this your chance to make a great first impression. If you grab the employer’s attention, convince them that you are passionate about the job vacancy, and prove that you love the company, you will most probably fill the vacancy.
By Ahmed El Sherbiny
Human Resources Operations Senior Advisor; Microsoft Egypt.