Landing a promising job is everyone’s dream, but the journey to getting one isn’t something most of us look forward to. It’s also not easy to go through hundreds of sites for the best cover letter examples, only to find out most of them sound like they’re written by robots.
That being said, it’s still a journey everyone has to go through.
By now, you’re probably aware that you’ll need a CV with you during your job search.
But what most of us overlook, and it’s often the secret sauce to landing actual jobs, is a compelling cover letter.
Cover letter for job applications: More important than you think
In fact, it’s been proven that submitting an impressive cover letter can, at the very least, land you an interview.
As many as 83% of hiring managers take the cover letter into consideration for their hiring decisions, according to Resume Mansion.
Meanwhile, 59% of hiring managers believe that the best cover letter offers insight into an applicant’s personality and working attitude.
If you still think a cover letter is not important, here’s another stat — only 6% of hiring managers think that a cover letter is unnecessary for a job application.
However, in the ever-evolving landscape of job hunting, the cover letter has transformed from a mere formality to a powerful tool.
That’s because competition in the job market is at an all-time high now.
Not convinced? The number of active job applicants on LinkedIn has significantly increased!
Now, it’s no longer just submitting a list of qualifications and achievements that you’ve accumulated throughout your academic years.
Employers desire a genuine connection with potential team members, and the cover letter stands as a potent tool to distinguish yourself from the crowd.
To navigate this shift, many students are embracing authenticity and individuality, paving the way for cover letters that not only sound real, but leave a lasting impression.
Best cover letters: Finding the right approach
If you’re struggling to craft a cover letter, a great way to get started is to refer to the best cover letter examples out there.
From thereon, determine the type of approach you’d like to go with, be it personal or storytelling, and start working on it.
If you’re unsure of the approach, choose one that you think best represents you.
While it may be tempting to include as much information as possible to impress the employer, try to keep the letter short.
More importantly, never regurgitate your resume.
Having your cover letter more than a page long would likely be perceived as long-winded, which may end up giving the employer a bad impression or discouraging them from reading all the way to the end.
5 best cover letter examples
Before we give you the winning formulas, or the best cover letter examples, it’s worth noting that you shouldn’t follow the examples word for word.
They merely serve as a guide for you to craft an impressive cover letter that’s distinctly you.
To help you stand out, we’ve curated five of the best cover letter examples, crafted with precision, authenticity, and a touch of ingenuity to elevate your job application game.3
1. The storyteller’s approach
Storytelling has been, and will always be, one of the most powerful tools to captivate the reader’s attention.
Begin with a personal story that relates to your professional or educational journey or passion for the industry.
For example, recount a moment when you realised that you desire the job you’re now applying for. Or, narrate a relevant challenging project that you managed to successfully navigate.
The key is to weave a narrative that showcases your skills, values and enthusiasm for the role.
“It’s funny how my love for technology first began. My younger brother had accidentally broken my mother’s laptop. To save him from getting into trouble, I tried fixing it myself. Relying on YouTube tutorials, I troubleshooted the laptop’s issue, and within a few hours, it was as good as new.
“Soon, I was surrounded by gadgets, fixing computers and consoles for friends and family. Now, I am able to build computers and gadgets from scratch.
“The journey wasn’t an easy one, but with hard work, perseverance, and passion, I am able to reach where I am today. And my interest in IT has never been stronger. I am eager to bring my innovative spirit and leadership skills to [company name], driving transformative change in the tech landscape.”
2. The problem-solving approach
Employers appreciate candidates who not only understand the challenges of the role but are also equipped to tackle them head-on.
A good way to impress them is to present them with a problem (the more complicated it is, the better!), and explain how you would solve it.
Try presenting solutions that not only showcase your skills but also address the needs of the company.
This demonstrates that you have a clear understanding of the company’s goals, in addition to being a problem solver.
“More and more companies are adopting various approaches to reducing their environmental footprint, but how does one stand out in this competitive world of sustainable business practices?
“In reviewing [company name]’s commitment to sustainability, I was inspired to devise a comprehensive strategy. My hands-on experience in implementing eco-friendly initiatives resulted in a 20% reduction in environmental impact and significant cost savings. I am eager to bring this strategic approach to [company name], furthering your mission for a greener future.”
3. The doing your homework approach
Showcasing that you’ve done your homework on the company not only reflects your genuine interest, but also proves your dedication to the application process.
However, you have to ensure that your findings on the company you’re applying for exceed what other applicants have discovered.
Reference specific projects, achievements or values of the company in your cover letter to demonstrate your alignment with their mission.
This approach signals to employers that you are not just applying for any job, but for this particular opportunity.
“Having delved into [company name]’s recent breakthrough in the media industry, I am deeply impressed by your commitment to reporting updated and accurate news to your readers. Thus, it should be of no surprise to anyone that you have achieved [state achievements].
“My work in my university, attested by my lecturers, position me perfectly to contribute to this exciting venture. I am eager to learn more with you, as well as bring my expertise to a team that is driving the media industry, and setting new standards.”
4. The personal connection approach
If you’ve had the opportunity to meet the company’s big figure, representative or hiring manager at an event, career fair or even a talk, use it to your advantage!
Building a personal connection with them can set your cover letter apart.
Then, if possible, address your letter to the specific individual rather than a generic salutation.
Reference a shared connection or a specific aspect of the company culture that resonates with you.
Establishing a personal link can create a sense of rapport before the interview even takes place.
“Having had the pleasure of connecting with [person’s name] at a recent industry event, I was intrigued by their insights and contribution to [company name] that has been setting industry standards.
“Their enthusiasm, combined with my passion for [industry], solidified my desire to contribute to the exceptional team at [company name]. I am excited about the prospect of bringing my skills to a workplace that values both innovation and camaraderie.”
5. The value-driven approach
An employer is always on the lookout for applicants who possess strong and professional values.
Begin by showcasing a specific instance where your values, such as teamwork, leadership, communication, integrity and more, played a pivotal role in an assignment’s success.
Or, if you have previous part-time job experiences, explain how you instilled your values in your job responsibilities.
This positions you as an applicant that not only meets the job requirements, but also possess the ability to potentially enrich the work environment.
“During my part-time stint at [company name], I led a cross-functional team through a peak period, where effective communication and teamwork were key to success. Coordinating between teams, I implemented a streamlined communication strategy that resulted in a 30% increase in efficiency and productivity.
“This experience showcases the importance of clear and collaborative communication, and although with met with challenges, I managed to deliver it. I hope to bring these skills to [company name], contributing to projects that thrive on effective team dynamics.”
All in all, crafting a good cover letter takes time; it’s not impossible if you put your mind to it!
But if you really don’t know where to start, try using a cover letter generator to help you.
Then, tweak the provided letter — the more the better — to make it distinctly you.
Don’t forget to also end your letter on a good note.
Here’s an example:
“Thank you for considering my application. I am excited about the opportunity to further discuss how my qualifications align with the needs of the company. Please feel free to contact me at your convenience to arrange an interview.”