November 11, 2009

How to write a cover letter?

Cover letter has to be a KISS (Keep It Short and Simple). We all live in a world where time is most important resource. It is always important to be very precise and attract the attention of reader within 10 seconds as most of us are multi tasking to keep up with our work loads, here is how you can keep your cover letter crisp and attractive.


A Short introductory first paragraph of cover letter

Your short introductory paragraph should mention about how you heard about the position and emphasizing the fact that your skills match the position.   The first two lines should make the person feel you have the skills required for the job and it should interest him to read further.  

Example:  I am writing in response to your ad in on March 20 2009 for a Java Developer.   I have worked for over 8 years as a Java Developer in various levels with major focus on database concepts and ETL.  (Give only what the client is looking for, nothing more)


Your second paragraph of cover letter

Here you let the reader know who you are. It describes you professionally and states your most important qualifications and accomplishments.

Example:  Most recently I was employed with (Company Name) as a Java Developer, with strong focus on various Java platforms along with Database concepts.   My Bachelors in Computers science combined with strong interest in the subject lead to an exposure with various high level projects.


The Third paragraph of cover letter

Here you must show that your specific skills are a good match for the position—your connection to the company.  


My experience working as a java developer with (Company Name) combined with my extensive knowledge on database concepts and ETL with extensive knowledge of various applications would be an asset to your company.   


Conclusion of cover letter with contact details

Your letter will conclude with “next steps.”  And your contact details (Name, Email ID and Phone Number). Always be courteous and understanding of your reader’s time, and use a tone that shows interest without being pushy.

A simple sentence, such as ‘I look forward to hearing from you soon,’ is a good way to end your letter.

  A slightly more aggressive sentence is, ‘I would be delighted to discuss my background and your company’s needs in person if given an opportunity.’


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