General Cover Letter Introduction

General / All-Purpose Cover Letter Sample

When you apply for a job, many times you will be required to submit a cover letter with your resume. Your cover letter should highlight points on your resume that make you a superior candidate for the position you are seeking. It should not simply review your resume, but rather point out details and expand on specific key assets which are essential for success in the job.

Information to Include in the Letter

Think of your cover letter not just as an introduction or a statement of intent to apply for a job, but as a golden opportunity to market yourself, your skills, your qualifications, and your training to an employer.

As a powerful marketing document, its primary purpose is to persuade a hiring manager to give a closer review to your resume than the typical six-second scan.

Sometimes a job posting lists the name of the hiring manager, and in that case, you should address your letter to him or her.

In cases where a name isn’t listed, you should make an effort to find out the right person to whom to address your letter. It’s always better to address your application materials to the appropriate hiring manager. If you can’t find their name by reviewing their corporate website or calling their front office, you may use the address of the company and an alternative salutation, such as “Dear Hiring Manager." Here are tips for how to address a cover letter.

The body of your letter should contain pertinent information about how you were referred to the opportunity, your interest in the position, your qualifications for the job, relevant training, and why you would make an excellent candidate.

In closing, you can include your plans for following up with the hiring manager: “I will call next week to follow up on the status of my application.” You should also thank them politely for their time. Use a business-like closing, such as “Sincerely,” “Best Regards,” or “Yours Truly,” followed by your name and signature (on a hard copy).

General / All-Purpose Cover Letter Sample

Your Name
Your Address (Optional)
Your City, State, Zip Code
Your Phone Number
Your Email

Date

Name
Title
Organization
Address
City, State, Zip Code

Dear Mr./Ms. Last Name:

I am writing in reply to the classified ad you posted seeking to fill the position of Graduate Student Advisor for the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies degree program at ABC College.

Having earned my Master of Arts degree in Academic Advising from XYZ University, I understand the importance for informed academic counseling and program planning in a higher education environment.

I have also experienced, first-hand, the comforting effect of being able to contact an adviser who genuinely cares for the professional growth and success of students.

Prior to my graduate studies, during my career as an electrician, I was elected Chairman of the Executive Board which sat as the union’s representatives to the apprenticeship advisory board. In this capacity, I was able to be an effective advisor to apprentices who were experiencing scholastic problems which threatened their future in the industry. I particularly enjoyed working with older apprentices who were seeking a career change and had problems adjusting to the obligations of work, school, and family life.

I believe that both my educational background in Academic Advising and my work-related duties of counseling and advising students enrolled in learning programs qualifies me for consideration for the position of Graduate Student Advisor. I look forward to discussing how my skills can be of value to ABC College as it prepares to move into the new millennium. Thank you for your time, consideration, and forthcoming response.

Sincerely,

Your Signature (hard copy letter)

Your Typed Name

More Sample Cover Letters
Follow this link to review cover letter samples for a variety of career fields and employment levels, including an internship cover letter sample, as well as entry-level, targeted. and email cover letters.

Cover Letter Articles and Advice: Top 10 Cover Letter Writing Tips | What to Include in a Cover Letter | Email Cover Letters | Targeted Cover Letters

How to Start a Cover Letter With Examples and Tips

What's the best way to start a cover letter for a job? The first sentence or two of your cover letter are the most important ones. Recruiters and hiring managers might spend mere seconds scanning your application. To make your cover letter stand out, you need to grab their attention right away.

What should these all-important first sentences say? Keep in mind that you’re hoping to differentiate yourself from the competition.

That might mean highlighting a contact, providing a quick window into your relevant background and experience, and/or emphasizing a significant accomplishment.

Think about why the hiring manager why he or she should select you, above all other candidates, for an interview, and you’ll be on the right track.

How to Start a Cover Letter

Be direct. In these opening sentences, you want to explicitly let the reader know which position you're applying for. For example:

"I am interested in the Coordinator position at ABC company."

Mention a contact. If someone referred you to the position, include that information as well. For example:

"Jane Doe let me know about the job, and suggested I apply for the position."

State an accomplishment. Try to state an accomplishment from your previous job. If you can, show how you added value to the previous company you worked for. You might even add the job title you had ​if it is similar to the one you are applying for.

Express excitement. Convey your passion for your work, and your excitement about the job and company. Your cover letter is an opportunity to sell yourself to the hiring manager, and to share why you're well qualified for the job. For example:

"I would greatly appreciate the opportunity to meet with you to discuss what I have to bring to the position at ABC company."

Use keywords. If you can include any keywords from the job listing, do so. For example, you might mention a skill you have that was included in the listing. Don't overdo it though. You want your letter to read naturally, not appear like it's stuffed with keywords.

Personalize Your Cover Letter

When you're not sure how to get started, review these examples of cover letter openings, but be sure to tailor your introduction to your personal circumstances and the job for which you are applying.

The more you personalize your cover letter to show that you're a match for the job requirements, the better your chances of getting selected for an interview.

Cover Letter Opening Sentence Examples

  • As an Information Technology professional with high-level management experience in the IT industry, I learned that the best way to achieve success was to motivate the resources I had with well-defined objectives and empowerment.
  • I am very interested in the entry-level position that is available at ABC Investment Partners. I recently graduated from XYZ University College and my courses in investments, finance, and business have given me a solid base upon which I plan to build to build my career.
  • I am writing to express my strong interest in the International Marketing position open at WellCam, Inc. My colleague Janna Doling recommended that I contact you directly about this position, due to my years developing successful campaigns for XYZ Company.
  • I'm writing to express my interest in the Editorial Assistant position listed on Monster.com. Given my five years of editorial experience and excellent capabilities, I would appreciate your consideration for this position.
  • I have a very strong interest in pursuing a teaching career. With experience working at both the elementary and high school levels, as well as in activities outside of the traditional classroom, I have a diverse background with much to offer.
  • I have the pleasure of being acquainted with one of the Counselors on your staff, Eleanor Seville. She let me know about the open position and recommended that I contact you.
  • I was excited to read about the Administrative Assistant job opening at XYZ company. I have several years of administrative experience in a variety of fields including insurance and finance.
  • It is my understanding that you have been deluged with resumes since Computer World released their list of the best companies at which to work. Mine is one more, but I do have experience that is hard to come by.
  • My proven track record of successfully performing complex analyses on various corporations makes me an ideal candidate for the Analyst opportunity that you have advertised

What to Write In the Rest of Your Cover Letter

Here are more examples of each section, plus samples of complete cover letters.

Read More:Top 10 Cover Letter Writing Tips | What to Include in a Cover Letter | Email Cover Letters

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