Do you ever feel like writing a cover letter is like yelling into an empty void? If you were to believe headlines across the internet, cover letters are dead, and no one cares about them anymore.
But the truth is more complicated than that. LinkedIn data suggests that 60% of recruiters don’t read cover letters; however, and this is a big however, half of those recruiters who would rather read a dictionary than a cover letter still believe that the cover letter is necessary.
So what’s going on? It depends on who you ask.
Manager and LinkedIn writer Jeff Lareau argued that writing and submitting a cover letter proves that you put effort into your application. But others say that it’s more than that. Communications consultant Lauren Nelson stresses that a well-written cover letter demonstrates that you understand “what the position entails, or that your background brings all that much value to the table.”
If you learn the basics of how to format a cover letter, then you will earn more opportunities than your competition.
2018’s Ultimate Cover Letter Format Guide
I’ll never forget the day that you spoke at the Creative Minds: Women in Design conference in Austin last year. The way that you described overcoming challenges while building and perfecting your own design agency was incredibly empowering. When I saw your post seeking a new junior graphic designer, I knew that I had to apply. The way that you described overcoming challenges while building and perfecting your own design agency was incredibly empowering. When I saw your post seeking a new junior graphic designer, I knew that I had to apply.
2. When mastering the perfect cover letter format, remember to explain any personal connections you share with the organization. If you don’t have such a contact, then express enthusiasm for the position.
3. So ends the opening paragraph of this cover letter. Already, the jobseeker has caught the reader’s attention, identified a personal connection, and showed excitement for the role.
You need someone who is detailed oriented but can still juggle multiple projects at once. I exhibit both traits. Last year when I was a senior at the University of Texas, Austin, I ran my own Etsy shop, served as secretary of the Artistically Inclined Club, and maintained a 3.5 GPA while doing so. For two years, I sold three of my Sarcastic Sayings Needlepoints per month but never received negative feedback from customers.
5. The best cover letter formats use the body paragraphs arguing for their candidacy.
I know that you seek candidates with experience in Photoshop and InDesign as well. I learned both in my internship at Della Designs last summer. Over the course of my internship, I trained two other interns in these programs. Since then, I downloaded both on my personal computer so that I could keep practicing my skills. I also use these programs create graphics for my friend who runs a beauty blog.
7. Your body paragraphs are also a great place to explain any confusion that your resume may cause. If you have a gap in your resume, then detail what you’ve been doing in between jobs.
As you explain in your job post, it’s critical that you find graphic designers who can conceptualize ideas and bring them to fruition. At Della Designs, I volunteered myself to create weekly social media graphics for Pinterest and Instagram. I came up with the weekly themes, then crafted each graphic. Ultimately, I created 30 for Pinterest and 30 for Instagram.
I would love the opportunity to meet with you to learn more about the junior graphic designer role at Jimenez and Jimi Design. You run a truly inspiring company, so it would be an honor to apply my skills to Jimenez and Jimi’s goals. Thank you for your time and consideration.
Bring the focus back to the job at hand.
9. A great cover letter format leaves room to thank the reader.
10. Note the formal close. Don’t act overly familiar with your reader — you aren’t friends.
Final Words on Your Cover Letter Format
A well-executed cover letter format will help you get more job interviews. Consider the following tips as you put your own letter together.
- Leave white space. Don’t cram an entire page with words. Instead, let the hiring manager’s eye travel easily around the page.
- Don’t include a picture of yourself.
- Keep it simple. It’s okay to use some design elements, but minimize the amount of space they occupy. Check out these examples for more ideas.
- Double check to ensure that your contact information is correct. If you changed your number, email address, or last name recently, then look even closer.
- Hold your cover letter at arm’s length. Squint your eyes. Note the first things that you see. That’s probably what your reader will see as well. Modify your paragraph length and organization so that your most marketable talents appear in easy-to-see spots.
Despite what you may have heard, the cover letter is still a crucial part of your application materials. If you can create a strong cover letter format that allows for quick reading, then you will be one step closer to finding a new role.
To create a customized cover letter for your ideal job, check out MyPerfectCoverLetter’s cover letter builder. With industry-specific text examples, you’ll see how easy it is to build a noteworthy cover letter.