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Cover Letters


Your cover letter should be personalized; it is the best way to introduce yourself. Tell the employer what you have to offer and why you want the job. Show enthusiasm.

Cover letters should be customized to each position and directly address the job description and responsibilities.


Establish a brand

Your resume, cover letter and any other documents should match. This demonstrates that you have the ability to craft an entire brand identity and that you can be consistent.

Ask not what your company can do for you

Tell your potential employer what you have to offer them, not the other way around. Cover letters lend your resume a voice, transforming a list of bullet points into a person—a person the company should hire.

Do your homework

Address your cover letter to a specific person. Nothing will turn off a hiring manager more than reading “Dear Sir or Madam,” or “To whom it may concern.”

Elaborate, don’t reiterate

Don’t rewrite everything that’s on your resume. The body of your letter should describe your most recent and relevant experience, the skills you’ve learned and experiences you’ve gained from them and how you’d apply those skills and insight to the position you’re applying for. You’re telling a story, so don’t be afraid to incorporate your personality in what you write.

Set yourself apart

Avoid clichés and vague descriptions like “I’m a people-person.” Show the hiring manager what makes you different from the rest. Focus on your strengths, not areas you need to grow in.

Be brief

Keep your cover letter to 1 page.

For more information on cover letters, see our Cover Letters handout