SAMPLE COVER LETTERS
I'm often asked when a cover letter is necessary. The honest answer is sometimes yes, and sometimes no. Some hiring managers and recruiters read cover letters carefully before deciding whether or not to review the resume. Others don't even look at them. Of course, the catch is that you have no idea who will fall into which category.
Writing a fabulous cover letter is essential. At best, it could be the deciding factor that secures you an interview. At worst, it won't hurt.
If you're new to cover letter writing, check out What is a Cover Letter. This article explains how cover letters are used and what you need to include.
For detailed instructions on cover letter writing, read Writing Cover Letters That Get Results. This article explains how you can use a well-known sales formula to write a cover letter that really grabs attention and makes the phone ring.
Sample Cover Letters
Then, when you're ready to start writing, use these sample cover letters to spark ideas.
- Quintcareers has a nice selection of sample cover letters, including cover letters for internships, military transitions and career change. They also have a variety of cover letters for different situations, such as cold contacts versus job applications.
- Resume Resource.com contains several sample cover letters. Just scroll down the page.
- Jobstar.org also contains some nice cover letter examples for different situations.
- The sample cover letters at Vault.com are skewed a little more towards senior positions - some of them are very specific (such as the sample cover letter for a position on Capital Hill) but the samples will help you see how a strong cover letter is constructed.
- Distinctive Documents is a professional resume writing service and there are 3 nice senior-level cover letter samples on their site here.
- For career changers, Monster.com has a nice sample cover letter. I also like this one, which I found on a Microsoft website (warning - magnifying glass needed!)
The bottom-line when writing a cover letter is that you must make it personalized and relevant to your situation. Use these letters to generate ideas and then go write a letter that truly shows employers why you are the right person to fill that vacancy.
I should also mention that my book, The DIY Guide to Writing a Killer Resumecomes with an in-depth guide to creating winning cover letters.
Louise Fletcher is the President of Blue Sky Resumes, and Managing Editor and Co-founder of the preeminent careers blog, Career Hub. She is a Certified Professional Resume Writer and many of her resumes have been published in the JIST "Expert Resumes" series. She has contributed to many online publications including About.com, Monster.com, The Ladders, and Net Temps.
Category: Application letter