Sunday, November 15, 2009

Writing Cover Letters For a Resume by Daryl D. Scopino

Hey everyone! This week's blog is a follow up on last week's blog about creating a strong resume. This week's discussion is about using cover letters with resumes. It is a great idea to create a cover letter along with a resume when you are applying for a job because cover letters give employers a better understanding about your qualifications that you can provide for their company.

  • Cover Letters: are letters that address the specific job that you are applying for.

  • Cover Letters are good for:
  1. Emphasizing your most important qualities.
  2. Highlighting your qualifications.
  3. Showing the experience you have with the job that you are applying for.
  4. Can be helpful to employers when they have to make tough decisions when it comes to hiring employees and can also make you the more deserving candidate for the position.
  • Cover Letter Basics:
  1. Cover letters have the same criteria as any other letter, an introductory paragraph, body paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph.
  2. Try to keep the cover letter to about a page long unless you are addressing extensive experience that is of importance for the position.
  3. Stay away from using unnecessary or irrelevant information. Employers, want to read small chunks of important information about you, not your entire life story.
  • Breaking Down The Three Main Parts of a Cover Letter:
  1. Introductory Paragraph:
  • Begins your cover letter by identifying the specific job you are applying for.
  • If the job you are applying for has a reference number, then you can include it in this paragraph.
  • You can also briefly explain where you found out about the applying for the job. (Ex. newspaper, online, job listing, or a friend)
  • This paragraph should end with a summary of how you meet the requirements of the job that you are applying for.
2. Body Paragraphs:
  • These paragraphs provide in depth details about your qualifications for the job.
  • In these paragraphs you should include:
  1. Specific Facts
  2. Figures
  3. Important details about your qualifications
  • Make sure that you organize your paragraphs in this section with types of qualifications. (Ex. first paragraph: education background, second paragraph: work experience, third paragraph: awards and achievements you have received.)
  • Use bullets or numbering lists to emphasize details.
3. Concluding Paragraph:
  • The concluding paragraph should refer to the resume and any documents that are included with the application process.
  • If necessary, try to present the employer with an opportunity to meet you in person. (Stay away from using concluding statements such as: "I look forward to your response" or "Contact me as soon as possible")

  • Here are some examples of cover letters:
  1. Example 1
  2. Example 2
  3. Example 3

Work Cited:

  • Dobrin, Sidney I., Christian R. Weisser, and Christopher J. Keller. Technical Communication in the 21st Century. Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall, 2007. Pg. 401-402
  • Resume - Free Resume Examples and Cover Letter Samples. Web. 16 Nov. 2009. .


  1. I like how you broke it down. Makes it very simple for one to do. I've never done a cover letter, but I will start from now on. And with the way you explained it, it'll be cake!

  2. I like the format, how the information is broken up. However, I don't like that there are no images in the post. Even though it's not required, a visual can aid in teaching the material. That being said, the examples you provided in links are excellent and examples are a good way to impart information clearly.

  3. Great post! I like how you did a follow up of your post from last week. I think this is extremely helpful to the readers who liked your first post and want more advice on resume writing. The tips on writing cover letters are very helpful. I especially liked the examples you gave. To take you post to the next level, you could incorporate an image to make your post pop. A little color can really catch a reader’s eye. Overall, you blog was extremely thorough. You readers should now have a strong, effective resume!

  4. I like how you broke this down and organized everything.
    Thank you.

  5. These are some really interesting and useful tips for writing cover letters that usually goes with your resume when you apply for a job. If your cover letter is well-written, it can help you land an interview or may lead you to new job opportunities but it's important to review it before submitting to avoid any possible errors.