At the end of this topic, you should be able
• understand what a cover letter is.
• know the importance of cover letter.
• know the content of cover letter.
• draft and develop a cover letter.
• write an effective cover letter.
What is Cover Letter?
• A marketing tool – it sells you
• Explains to the potential employer how
you will help the company
• An opportunity to introduce yourself,
present your qualifications, and show the
search committee that you are a potential
candidate for the position.
Importance of Cover Letter
The ultimate goal is the interview.
To gain an attentive audience for your resume, making it an
important employment communication tool.
A cover letter is very important because:
• It gives you the opportunity to draw the employers’
attention to your specific qualifications.
• It provides a sample of your written communication
skills to demonstrate your intelligence and help to
establish your credibility and professionalism.
Types of Cover Letter
• When someone has suggested that you contact a
specific person at a company about job possibilities.
A response to an ad
• When you answer to a job posting or announcement
– the most common cover letter.
An unsolicited letter
• When you do not know anyone at the company and
kinds of jobs
have no idea whatUHL2112/Sem1-05/06_HKare available.
Content of Cover Letter
Typically, the content of a cover letter is
• The Subject Heading
• The Opening Paragraph
• The Pitch Paragraph
• The “Why you need to Choose me”
• The Last Paragraph
The Subject Heading
This should be straight to the point and identify the
post that you are applying for.
The common style for the subject heading is to
bold it and capitalize all the letters.
• APPLICATION FOR THE POST OF
• APPLYING FOR THE SENIOR TECHNICAL
The Opening Paragraph
This paragraph states
• your reason(s) for writing
• the position for which you wish to be
• a statement indicating where and when
you saw the job advertisement.
I am writing to you in response to your
advertisement for a Production Engineer which
appeared in The New Straits Times advertised on
June 15, 2005.
I am interested in applying for this post as
advertised in The Star on June 15, 2005.
I wish to be considered for the post of Senior
Technical Engineer as advertised in The Star
dated June 15, 2005.
The Pitch Paragraph
• Provide some insights about yourself with
reference to past accomplishments and
qualifications that are relevant to the
position you are applying for
• The objective of this part is for the reader
to see you as a viable candidate for the
I graduated with a degree in Mechanical Engineering
from University College of Engineering and
Technology, Malaysia (UCET) in 2002. During my
industrial training, I worked with Gambang Industries
Incorporation, a leading manufacturing in west coast
of Malaysia. In the Quality Department of the
company, I obtained valuable experience as my
duties included the design of control mechanism for
heavy machinery. After the training, I was also given
the opportunity to work as their apprentice mechanic
during the semester breaks. I was also active in
various students’ activities at the university. I was the
Secretary in the Students Representative Council.
‘Why Should you Choose me’
This paragraph should summarize
• the reason(s) why you would be an asset
to the prospective employer
• what are the benefits of hiring you
The kind of work in which your company is
engaged in particularly interests me, and I
would welcome the opportunity it would
afford to utilize my training. Furthermore, I
am certain that my educational background
and experience in the relevant field will
prove to be a benefit to your organization.
• Not just a closing
• A chance for you to request or suggest for
the next step like an interview or a phone
• About where to go from here
• About opening the door to further contact
• My full particulars are shown on my enclosed
curriculum vitae. I shall be happy to attend an
interview at any time, and look forward to hearing
from you soon.
• I am enclosing my resume for your reference, and
I would appreciate an opportunity for an interview
so that we might discuss my qualifications and
experience in greater details.
• My resume and copies of relevant certificates
have been enclosed for your reference. I look
forward to meeting you at an interview at anytime
convenient to you
Format for Cover Letter
Use of Language
• Keep your sentences short and your
• Be aware of the power of short words and
• Keep it simple, state the facts and focus
on the message you are sending out
rather than the manner in which you send
Tips to Write Cover Letter
• Check if applications should be
handwritten. If it is not indicated, ensure
that your application is well-typed and
• Be short and concise. Leave details for
the curriculum vitae.
• Be specific about details. Do not use
Tips to Write Cover Letter
• Use friendly and NOT familiar tone without
• Do not make claims that are not truthful.
• Preferably a one page letter broken down to
3 – 5 focused paragraphs.
• Focused on the employer’s needs NOT
• Do not sound desperate but interested.
What not to do!
• Send a resume without a cover letter
• Discuss salary unless the ad or job listing
• Repeat information that appears on the
resume, except in the briefest, introductory
• Generalize about personal qualities or
past job titles.
What not to do!
• Give unnecessary personal information.
• Include anything that you will not be
able to explain during the interview.
• Send Xerox copies.
• Staple or use paper clip items.
yea yea !!