Writing a job application letter or cover letter is crucial to being considered for a job. Your cover letter is your first and possibly only impression. Learning know how to write a job application letter is possibly even more important than learning to write a quality resume, because if potential employers toss your application in the trash based on your poor cover letter, then they will never even see your resume.
Read Requirements Carefully
The key to writing a job application letter which will set you apart from most applicants is to read the job requirements carefully. You’d be surprised how many people blindly apply to every job in their industry without really reading the job requirements. If you are one of those people, be prepared to rarely ever find work. No one wants to hire someone who can’t take the time to read a one page (or less) job ad carefully and follow basic instructions.
Customize Your Cover Letters
You are interested in a job. Now, you want the employer to be interested in you. To make a potential employer know you’re seriously interested and, more importantly, the most qualified person for the job, write a job application letter tailored for each position. Having a boilerplate template can make writing a job application letter faster and easier, and that’s great, as long as you tweak each letter to fit each job you’re applying for. The first step to doing this is to address each employer by name (i.e., “Dear Mr. Smith” rather than “To whom it may concern”). The next step is to incorporate the necessary qualifications listed in the job ad. For example, if the job ad says applicants should have a degree in journalism, two years of professional freelance writing experience, and preferably experience writing for the food industry, you should summarize how you meet those qualifications. If you have written for the food industry, include the name of the publications and a direct link to online clips (if applicable). The final step in writing a cover letter for a job application is to let the employer know why you would be the best person for the job