How to Tailor Your Cover Letter for Each Job Application
To get a higher chance of getting the job position there is one vital piece of advice: customize your resume and cover letter according to the job opening you have chosen. It is always the right choice because no recruiter or hiring manager wants to waste their time on documents filled with irrelevant information, or on generic resumes and cover letters. Professional resume editing services can help job seekers to tailor their resumes according to the openings they choose.
But what about cover letters? How can an applicant effectively customize cover letters?
Often job hunters want to skip this piece of work because they consider it to be a waste of time. But it is necessary to remember that a cover letter is the first chance to get noticed by hiring managers and create a good impression. When job advisors talk about the renowned elevator pitch, they’re talking about cover letters. Recruiters don’t look at resumes, interviews, or job applications first; instead, they look at cover letters to get basic knowledge and understand if the candidate suits the opening.
Should you personalize a cover letter?
A lot of job hunters are concerned about one question: do you have to write a different cover letter for each job?
Creating a tailored cover letter doesn’t always mean writing a new one for each open position. There is always an option to make a template, highlighting the information that must be tailored according to the job description and company needs. Anyways, the more the cover letter is customized, the more chances the candidate gets. Therefore, the more time is spent on customizing a cover letter, the less time is needed to get the desired job.
Read More: Is It Necessary To Write A Cover Letter?
If you want to have a perfectly tailored cover letter you may seek assistance from professional cover letter writers. But if you want to create it yourself, to improve the understanding of how an applicant can effectively customize cover letters there is a list of tips for job candidates.
1. Do the research
First of all, to tailor the cover letter the applicant should get to know everything possible about the company that offers the opening. It is necessary to do some research on the organization’s industry as well.
Here are a few things to pay more attention to during the research:
- Who will read your cover letter?
- What are the position requirements?
- What are the company’s mission and vision?
- What are the latest industry trends?
Investigating these topics will assist you in making a cover letter that is more relevant to the company and hence more beneficial for you as an application.
2. Make a salutation personal
Nowadays there is no place for generic greetings such as “To Whom It May Concern” in a tailored cover letter. The hiring manager who will read your document is a real person, and people love a personal approach. Making a personal salutation will show the hiring manager your personal approach and highlight your interest in this exact job position.
Job descriptions often state the name of the person to contact, so make sure not to forget to address the letter and other materials to this person. If the job posting does not provide a name, there are still several options for determining it. A quick search on LinkedIn may be useful to find the name of the hiring manager. Alongside this, there is always an option to contact the employer via email or a call and ask directly for the contact person’s name or how they prefer to be addressed. When you get the name, simply start your letter with “Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms. Jones”.
There are also cases when several people of a company’s staff work on applications. You might not be able to address the letter to a specific person in certain situations. If you’re applying for such a company, address your letter to “Dear Hiring Team at [Company Name]” or “Dear Hiring Manager”. It is also possible to simply indicate the name of the company in the place of the actual person.
3. Create an appropriate introduction
Every cover letter starts with an introduction paragraph. The company’s name, position, and other identifiers given in the job description should all be included in a well-written, tailored cover letter.
Don’t make it too long and forego the greeting cliches like “I hope this letter finds you well”. It is better to start with the purpose of writing and naming the position you are applying for. Introduce yourself as a professional and point up why you are a perfect candidate for the position.
4. Include relevant skills and abilities
To create a job-specific cover letter it is vital to read the job description very attentively. Start by comparing your CL with the job description. Hiring managers seek individuals that have certain skills and can perform specific duties. Therefore you need to include skills that correspond to the qualities the organization needs in an employee. But forget about copy-and-pasting, as it will play a dirty trick on you. It is much better to match the skills to your previous experience. Emphasize your noteworthy accomplishments and important characteristics.
Some organizations will separate your cover letter and resume and have different hiring managers review each item. You may showcase both your personality and skill set by describing how your previous experience or degree is ideal for their current open position.
Related: Hard Skills vs. Soft Skills: What’s the Difference?
5. Highlight your passion for the job
Any employer wants to know that their potential workers are 100 percent committed to the company. That is the section where your knowledge about the organization and industry will fit the best.
A customized cover letter should inform the recruiter why you desire the position in the last paragraph — not the closing one. In this section, it would be beneficial to show how the company’s mission and vision reflect your own position. You can find the information about the organization’s main goals on the company’s website on the ‘About us’ page.
In this part of a customized cover letter, you can also mention how passionate you are about the company’s industry.
6. Mind the length and the keywords
Some companies use Applicant Tracking Software to exclude unsuitable cover letters and resumes before they get to hiring managers and recruiters’ hands. Therefore you need to make sure that the cover letter you are going to send is ATS compliant. To do so you need to return to the job description and look for keywords. Most likely you can find them in requirements and unique hard skills specific to the position. Include these keywords in your cover letter to make it past the ATS.
Read More: How to Check if My Resume is ATS-Friendly
Another important thing about formalizing your document is its length. While writing a cover letter it is easy to get carried away, especially if you’re enthusiastic about the job. But it is important to remember that hiring managers are busy. So you must follow the rule and make your cover letter not longer than one page. Make sure to stick to the topic and avoid repeating yourself.
7. Don’t forget to proofread your document
Even if it seems obvious, your cover letter must be error-free. Your ideas should be brief and to the point, your contact information should be accurate, and everything should be grammatically correct. Don’t let your cover letter fail because of a typo. You may want someone to read your document before sending it over and hear the honest feedback. The cover letter must show you in the best light and emphasize that you are a perfect candidate for the desired position.
If a candidate really wants to get the desired position, using the same cover letter for different jobs is absolutely not an option. Creating a unique cover letter for each position you apply for takes a little additional effort. Spending the time to create a cover letter that explains to the hiring manager that you’re the best candidate for the post, on the other hand, will save you a lot of extra time in your job hunt and link you to your new job soon. If you don’t have spare time or hesitate about your writing abilities, professional cover letter writers from ResumeEdge will help you to get your desired career.