Cover Letter Writing Guidelines and Templates
Good letter writing techniques are as important to your job search as an effective resume. This is usually the first correspondence you have with a potential employer and it should always be accompanied by your resume. Use your cover letter to sell your unique abilities and to highlight a few outstanding and relevant accomplishments. For help getting started, use the outline below to begin constructing your cover letter. If you need more guidance, we have also provided the following:
Template – A cover letter template to serve as starting point for your document
Sample 1 – A sample targeted cover letter
Sample 2 – A sample generic cover letter
Sample 3 – A sample international student cover letter
Sample 4 – A sample military experience cover letter
Review the Cover Letter Webinar before you begin drafting your cover letter.
The Basic Outline
City, ST Zip
Dear [Contact Name OR Hiring Manager],
- Briefly introduce yourself, your interest in the company, & the specific position/opening.
- Mention the names of individuals you have met from the company, and/or the event, or person who directed you to this position.
- Cite other research that prompted you to write, such as a recent article on the company or a positive networking interaction.
- Last line should provide a summary statement of who you are & why you are a strong fit for the position.
Body (Usually 1 or 2 paragraphs)
- Provide specific examples of your background that connect to the needs of the company and let the recruiter understand how you would “fit”.
- All skills need to include “evidence” (specific examples) that clearly demonstrate the how/why of development.
- Focus on your skills and accomplishments that match the job description.
- Show how your MBA adds to those skills.
- Do not restate what is on your resume, go deeper.
- Make sure to show your knowledge of the industry and company.
- Restate & summarize your key skills & fit for this position.
- Provide all personal contact information.
- Let them know you are interested in further discussing the position with them.
- Always thank the reader for their time & consideration.
Enclosure(s) (If you send a resume or other materials)