Happy Independence Day from Kranect! Here are some tips to make your next cover letter as hot as the fourth of July. Let the fireworks begin!
In a nutshell, your cover letter should be interesting and show the reader how you can add value. Everything should be positive about you and the company. You should tailor the letter specifically to the opportunity and company you’re targeting. Here is the recipe.
• Paragraph 1: In two or three sentences, explain your purpose and get the reader’s attention. If your cousin is the CEO of the company, it’s a good idea to name drop.
• Paragraph 2: Everyone’s favorite topic is themselves, and that goes for companies too. Spend three to five sentences explaining what you like about the company. Visit the company website and review the “about us” and “mission statement” sections. If you have time, look over their recent press releases or blog updates. Use this information to show the reader that your values and personal mission line up with the values and mission of the company.
• Paragraph 3: Now you get to talk about yourself, but only a little bit. The point is to get the conversation started, not write a biography. Keep it to a short paragraph of only three to five sentences and focus on the value you can add. It may be helpful to use the job description. If the job description says that Exchange Server 2008 migrations are important as well as a “can do” attitude, you might say something like this: My specialties include problem-solving, Exchange Server migrations, and saving the day.
• Paragraph 4: Time to say goodbye. Close out the cover letter in two or three sentences. Say thank you, repeat your interest, and add contact information.
• Finally, I don’t recommend saying something like, “I’ll follow up next week” in your cover letter. Actions speak louder than words; just follow up in 10 business days or so to check in. If you know the CEO, you should also let that person know you applied for the job and check back with that person if you don’t hear back in 10 days or so.
Example cover letter:
To whom it may concern:
I’m contacting you to express my interest in your Helpdesk Administrator opportunity. John CEO is a relative of mine, and that is how I heard about this exciting opportunity with your IT team.
Fireworks Company’s mission of making safety a priority lines up with my own values. I recently read about Fireworks’ partnership with the Red Cross for the first annual Safety First Event and have volunteered to help them set up their AV equipment. I’m really looking forward to being part of this important event!
My specialties include problem-solving, Exchange Server migrations, and saving the day. In a recent project, I was working on a migration of Exchange Server 2008 when the whole system had a melt-down. Rather than panic, I worked with my team-mates to complete the migration successfully. I know I have what it takes to keep Fireworks Company up and running.
I’m looking forward to hearing from you about your Helpdesk Administrator opportunity. Please contact me at 303.333.3333 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your time!
Happy job hunting, America!