How To Write An Effective

Some people dismiss the cover letter as a kind of title page that simply states you are applying for the position and here is your resume. However, the most successful job applicants pay attention to every detail in an effort to stand out and know that writing an effective cover letter can help you get an edge over the competition. Here are some tips on how to craft correspondence that will catch the attention of a prospective employer.

Accuracy is mandatory. Make sure you have the company's correct name and address and the name and title of the stated contact person. If you don't know who to write to, call the company and find out who is in charge of hiring for that position.

While a handwritten note may seem more personal, unless you are a professional calligrapher, use a computer to ensure readability. Use nice stationary and not cheap feeling copier paper, choosing a neutral color-using some eye-shocking neon color will get you noticed, but not in a positive way. Pay attention to spelling, grammar and punctuation. Select an easy to read font such as Times New Roman or Calibri and use double spaces.

Use the first paragraph to introduce yourself, what job listing you are responding to, and your interest in applying for the stated position. Don't be afraid to be creative to grab the reader's attention from the first sentence and give your letter some punch.

The next section should outline the reasons why you meet the requirements to fill the position. You don't want to reiterate your résumé; it's more hitting the highpoints. Sell yourself through specific experience and skill set and what you will bring to the company. But do not exaggerate your abilities and experience. Conclude by reiterating your interest and thanking them for their consideration. Make sure to provide your complete contact information including email address and phone number.

When finished the letter should be no more than a single page long. You may want to give the letter to a colleague to proof read or you may opt to hire a professional to proof and edit the letter. Print out the address and return labels instead of handwriting them for a more professional appearance.

After sending your cover letter and resume, always follow up with a phone call, which can significantly improve your chances of getting an interview.