Aug 21, 2018 - 09:57 PM
May 13, 2020 - 05:08 PM
The correct format for a cover letter includes a header, an opening greeting, an opening paragraph, one or two body paragraphs, a closing paragraph, and a closing salutation. A cover letter should never be more than one page. The font size should be in the 10 to 12-point size range and the font style should be easy to read – Arial, Times, and Calibri are all safe choices.
Let's dive into what each section of a cover letter contains. Your header should have your current contact information, including your LinkedIn profile URL, your website URL, and online portfolio URL (if applicable). The opening greeting is addressed to the hiring manager or recruiter, preferably by name. (If you cannot find the hiring manager or recruiter's name, you can use "Dear Hiring Manager").
The opening paragraph, which consists of about two to three sentences, is used to introduce yourself, so write about your interest in the job and why you're applying. Next, you will write the body paragraphs, which detail your relevant experience and the impact your work has had on a past employer. When describing the impact of your work, try to cite specifics – such as "developed a new inventory system that cut waste by 20 percent." You must tell a story in the body paragraphs that speaks to the needs of the job advertisement and is not a regurgitation of your resume. Focus the body paragraphs on how you can help the company.
In your closing paragraph, recap your skills and experiences and how they align to the job, and reiterate your interest in the position. Be sure to express appreciation to the person for his or her consideration, and note the best method of contact (phone, email) for reaching you.
If you want to learn more about cover letter format, check out LiveCareer's Cover Letter Formats page.