The purpose of the cover letter is to overall, summarize why you would be the best candidate for the position that you are applying for and to also further explain details on your resume that may call your candidacy into question, such as gaps on your resume or very brief stint with a particular employer.
A typical structure for a cover letter is 3-4 paragraphs.
- 1st Paragraph: Include how you found out about the opening along with some basic information about yourself.
- 2nd Paragraph: This is the paragraph to include why you are interested in the position. Further include relevant accomplishments. Also, this is the paragraph in which to explain other items on your resume in detail.
- 3rd Paragraph: In this paragraph, express your interest in the opportunity for a interview, etc. Also offer the employer additional documentation of success along with references and letters of recommendation.
In conclusion, thank the reader for consideration of your resume.
- Make sure that your cover letter is addressed properly to the intended recipient.
- If there is a 3 year gap on your resume, this would be the place to explain why that is the case (Paragraph 2). Do your best not to repeat information that is already on your resume.
- Include information about availability for an interview
- State willingness to travel or include further information regarding willingness to relocate or specific relocation choices.
- Highlight points that match the company’s hiring requirements