Finding a new job involves a lot of steps. Jobseekers who want a job in the U.S. from South Africa often spend a lot of time on their resume and neglect the cover letter. Writing an effective cover letter is key to giving a good first impression to hiring managers. A well-crafted cover letter is the first chance to sell your skills, experience, and personality to a potential employer. Learn how to write a great cover letter with these tips.
What Exactly Is a Cover Letter?
A cover letter provides additional information about your abilities and work history. It is sent along with your resume, whether physically or electronically. The main purpose of a cover letter is to provide details about your qualifications. There are several different formats for cover letters, including
- A prospective letter inquiring about possible positions
- An application letter responding to a posted job opening
- A networking letter requesting assistance and information for your job search
- The position for which you are applying
- How you found out about the position
- A referral, if applicable
- Your specific qualifications for the position
- Your unique skills that will benefit the employer
- A statement of gratitude for being considered
- Contact information: Put this at the beginning of the cover letter if a physical document. Emailed cover letters should have contact information at the very end.
- Salutation: Do your best to find out who the hiring manager is, and address him or her with a professional greeting. If you cannot find the employer’s name, write, “Dear Hiring Manager.”
- Introduction: Describe how you heard about the job and briefly bring up your relevant skills in an engaging manner.
- Body: Explain your interest in the position and specific qualifications in one or two paragraphs.
- Closing: Restate your skills and how you would benefit the company. State your interest to take part in an interview and thank the hiring manager for considering you.
- Signature: End your cover letter with a complimentary statement followed by a signature. If your cover letter is an email, simply type your name.
For most people looking for a job in the U.S. from South Africa, an application letter works in most situations.
How to Compose a Cover Letter for a job in the U.S. From South Africa
Your cover letter can be the difference between your resumes getting ignored or landing a job interview. Devoting effort and time to writing a good cover letter simply makes sense. The first and most important step is realizing your cover letter should not duplicate your resume. Good cover letters complement your resume with a personal touch. Your cover letter should include the following:
Your cover letter should explain why you’re interested in the organization and identify your relevant experiences and skills. Match your skills to those listed in the job description and provide tangible accomplishments related to them.
Cover Letter Structure
There are certain guidelines you should follow when writing a cover letter for a job in the U.S. from South Africa. Here are some things that should be in your cover letter:
Follow these general guidelines effectively by targeting your cover letter for each position for which you’re applying.
Edit and Proofread
Just as with any document related to finding a job in the U.S. from South Africa, it is crucial for you to edit and proofread. It is easy for everyone to make mistakes, especially when making several cover letters for different jobs at the same time. You may want to read the letter out loud to catch small mistakes. It may sound tedious, but make sure to double-check that the company name and contact’s name is correct.
Think of a cover letter as your sales letter. It is your first way to make a good impression and stand out from the competition. When you take time to develop a personalized and engaging cover letter, potential employers will see that you’re right for the job.