Why write a cover letter? When some people even hear the word cover letter, they cringe. It’s hard enough trying to find a job you’re interested in and fill out the application- now you’re asked to provide a cover letter that showcases your personality and skills? It’s a lot to digest, but what job seekers are asking is- Is there a method to this madness?
So, why write a cover letter? The cover letter is where you get to shine apart from the rest of the competition. Cover letters give employers a glimpse of your personality, allowing them to clearly see your skills, accomplishments, education, and other facts that make you the top pick for the position.
What you might be surprised to find out is that cover letters actually do serve a purpose and a good one at that. We are going to dive into the world of cover letters and explain, in detail, why you should not only be ready and willing to compile a cover letter but why it’s so important, too. Let’s dive in!
Why Write a Cover Letter, You Ask? Here are 7 Reasons
Cover letter purpose: why do you need a cover letter anyway?
Even though you might be one of many job-seekers, there is one thing that brings everyone united as one- mutual hate for cover letters.
But it’s not all bad.
1. It’s More Personal than a Resume
You can ask any hiring manager and they will tell you the same thing- they get sick and tired of reading through resume after resume.
It’s tiring and boring, as they all seem to say just about the same thing- education, employment history, awards and certificates, and references.
So how can you stand out from the crowd when applying?
Perhaps the biggest benefit of sending a resume is that you get to be more personal with the hiring manager.
No longer are they struggling through a sea of resumes.
Your cover letter makes you stand out and gives them something more interesting to read over, which is already a huge plus!
2. You Can Show Off Your Writing Capabilities
Now, this might not be the biggest worry for some hiring manager, but let’s face it- someone who can strum up a professional cover letter with correct grammar and spelling is probably someone they can rely on in the biz.
This simply shows that you are educated (at least somewhat) and that you know how to be professional when it’s due.
This is even more important when applying for senior positions and, of course, any position that will include writing in the job description.
Double-check your resume for any errors before sending it to make a top-notch impression with the higher-ups.
3. You Can Show Off Your Communication Capabilities
Being able to communicate is a major plus for any hiring manager, and the best way to find out if you’re able to handle your co-workers and/or the public is by checking the way you handle the cover letter.
The cover letter can show employers that you’re able to communicate in a professional, strategic, and direct way.
That being said, make sure that your cover letter is not excessively long or too short.
You want to be direct and to the point, but don’t skimp on any of the must-know details like that sales record you beat or earning manager of the year at your last business.
4. You Can Provide an In-Depth Look at Your Skills and Abilities
The number one goal of the cover letter is to let the employer know all about your skills, abilities, and background that directly relate to the job you are applying for.
The cover letter will give them a more in-depth and closer look at your skills, highlighting these areas so they ultimately pique the employer’s interest.
Your skills, abilities, education, and employment background should always relate to the job at hand.
These facts should also be sprinkled through your cover letter, from start to finish, to gain the attention of the reader and keep them interested through the entirety of the cover letter- this is a surefire way to expect an interview, right?
5. It Shows That You Are Truly Interested in the Job
Anyone can hit the ‘Apply’ button, especially on job boards such as Indeed, but it doesn’t mean anything.
They want money, and the job sounds decent with good pay. But you really want this job. It’s the job you have been looking for and you don’t want to be like everybody else.
Cue the cover letter!
Cover letters show that you went the extra mile to get ‘in’ with the hiring manager and show that you really want the job.
Trust us- employers love to see this, and they will definitely want to give your cover letter a look- especially if you’re the only few that did.
Just make sure that you are not copy-pasting cover letters for every job you apply to. Make them unique!
6. You Can Explain Your Resume More Thoroughly
So there’s a break in your employment history that might not look good?
Well, your cover letter can also explain anything that might be perceived as a negative trait in your resume and turn it to a positive one.
For instance, someone who took a 4-year break to travel abroad can easily put that into their cover letter, explaining that they wanted to gain more exposure in the business they’ve chosen across the world.
Let the cover letter be your platform to explain yourself, but always end it on a positive note.
Keep your explanations short, though. You don’t want to spend an entire paragraph explaining yourself unless it directly relates to the job you’re seeking.
7. You Set the Stage for the Future
The ending of your cover letter can make the difference from the employer calling you or not.
Let’s put it this way…if you create a killer resume, end it by suggesting a time and date for them to give you a call.
In this way, you are engaging them and leading them to an end result which is, of course, the phone call and face-to-face interview in the near future.
Why write a cover letter? Sometimes being a little pushy isn’t always a bad thing, right?!
Are cover letters still necessary?
Yes! A lot of people might think that cover letters aren’t necessary for this day and age, but the fact of the matter is they are just as relevant as they were years ago. Of course, it’s a lot easier for employers to get to know you from a Google search, but that still doesn’t compete with the good old fashioned cover letter that is handcrafted by the job-seeker himself.
What is the purpose of a cover letter?
The purpose of the cover letter is simply to show the employer that you are interested in the position while highlighting your achievements to stand out from the applying pack. The cover letter will show off your personality as well as writing and communication skills which are looked at by employers. That’s why cover letters should always be sent with your application.