If you have recently completed your graduation and are new to the job market, it is as important for you to craft an effective cover letter as it is to write a strong resume. Since you do not have any prior work experience, you may not be sure about what to write in your cover letter to make you stand out and build a strong case to set you apart from other applicants in the competitive job market. The key is to make sure that you research about the company you are applying to, and carefully read the job description.
Incorporate the key words from the job description, and use the similar language as the employer uses in their communication. Selectively pick the most relevant information from your resume and rephrase it in your cover letter. Do not copy paste the same information from your resume.
Instead of talking about what you want from the company, focus on how you are a good fit and can benefit the company. Persuade the recruiter to read your resume and ask them for an interview or a meeting.
Here are some tips to write an effective cover letter for Recent College Graduates:
- Keep your cover letter short and crisp. It should ideally be no longer than one page. Modify it to match the job you are applying for to show that you understand what the job entails. Be specific about your skills and show how they match the job specifications, and align with what the employer is looking for.
- When writing a cover letter, you need to introduce yourself, mention the job or kind of job you are applying/looking for, show that you possess the skills and experience required for the job.
- Put your name, email id, and phone number at the top of your cover letter. It would be appropriate to use an email address that include your first and last name to make it look professional. Create a new befitting email id, if you do not already have one.
- Below your name and contact details, add the name of the person you’re writing to; their position, name of the company and contact details. You may email or call the employer to find out the name of the person who will be reading your application, if it is not already mentioned in the job advertisement. Use their title (Mr./Ms.) and last name to address them instead of using first name. Avoid addressing your letter as ‘To whom it may concern’ unless you have to.
- State which position you are applying for, give reference number(if any) and where the position was advertised, in the subject. For example- “Regarding: position of Data Entry Clerk as advertised on jobsDB.com (Ref XYZ)”
- Focus on the content of your cover letter. Highlight any summer jobs, internships, campus involvement and volunteer work experience you have, in addition to any co-curricular activities, competitive exams, training and certifications.
- It would be advantageous to mention achievements in sports and extracurricular activities you participated in, at high school and university level.
- In the end, to encourage the employer to get back to you, thank them for their time, mention that you have attached your resume for their perusal and that you are eager to hearing from them.
- Always spellcheck your cover letter for any typos or spelling mistakes. Format your cover letter correctly irrespective of whether it’s a hard copy of the cover letter or an email one.
Sample Cover Letter
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