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Business Letter Writing: Writing a Cover Letter when Applying for a Job

human-resources

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Business Letter Writing: Writing a Cover Letter when Applying for a Job



The cover letter should always be included when sending your resume or CV for a possible job interview. This letter of application serves the purpose or introducing you and asking for an interview. Here is an outline to writing a successful cover letter. To the right of the letter, look for important notes concerning the layout of the letter signaled by a small number in red.

Cover Letter Outline

2520 Vista Avenue 1
Olympia, Washington 98501
April 19, 2001

Mr. Bob Trimm, Personnel Manager 2
Ideas Inc.
587 Lilly Road

Dear Mr. Trimm: 3

Opening paragraph - Use one of the following to bring yourself to the attention of the reader and make clear what job you are applying for:

  1. Summarize the opening
  2. Name the opening
  3. Request an opening
  4. Question the availability of an opening

Middle paragraph(s)- Use one of the following in each of your middle paragraphs to provide the reader with plenty of reasons to invite you to an interview:

  1. Education
  2. Work experience
  3. Ability to work with others and/or alone
  4. Interest in your field
  5. Interest in the company
  6. Responsibilities in previous positions

Closing paragraph - Use the closing paragraph to ensure action on the part of the reader

The last paragraph needs to help ensure that action is taken. You can ask for an interview appointment time, stating that you will be happy to come to the employer's office when convenient. Make it easy for the reader to follow-up by providing your telephone number and email address.

Sincerely,  

Kenneth Beare 4

Enclosure

1Begin your cover letter by placing your address first, followed by the address of the company you are writing to.

2Use complete title and address; don't abbreviate.

3Always make an effort to write directly to the person in charge of hiring.

4Always sign letters.

Example Cover Letters

Here is an example of a sample cover letter written in response to an advertisement in the newspaper. Before taking a look at the letter, here are some useful key phrases to use in your own cover letters.

Useful Key Phrases

  • I am writing to you in response to your advertisement for
  • As you can see from my enclosed resume, my experience and qualifications match this position's requirements.
  • I would like to point out immediately upon his return.
  • During ., I improved (furthered, extended, etc.) my knowledge of,
  • I look forward to an opportunity to speak with you in person. (OR to speak with you personally)

Cover Letter: Example 1

2520 Vista Avenue
Olympia, Washington 98501

April 19, 2001

Mr. Bob Trimm, Personnel Manager
Importers Inc.
587 Lilly Road

Dear Mr. Trimm:

I am writing to you in response to your advertisement for a Legal Assistant specializing in Port Regulatory Law, which appeared in the Seattle Times on Sunday, June 15. As you can see from my enclosed resume, my experience and qualifications match this position's requirements.

I especially would like to point out that I graduated Cum Laude from The University of Tacoma and was hired directly upon graduation due to my expertise in port authority regulations.

During the four years that I worked for Shoreman and Co., I furthered deepened my knowledge of the fast changing regulatory laws in our state. My employer also thought highly enough of my abilities to promote me to head legal researcher after my first year of employment.

I look forward to an opportunity to personally discuss the position with you. I will call you within the next five days to arrange an interview.

Sincerely,  

Kenneth Beare  

Enclosure

Here is an example of a sample cover letter requesting a position. Before taking a look at the letter, here are some useful key phrases to use in your own cover letters.

Useful Key Phrases

  • Please accept this letter as an expression of interest in the position of
  • I have enclosed a copy of my resume for your review.
  • and believe I possess the right combination of.skills.
  • My current position . has provided the opportunity to
  • I would welcome the opportunity to personally discuss my potential contributions to your company with you.
  • I look forward to your reply.

Cover Letter: Example 2

2520 Vista Avenue
Olympia, Washington 98501

April 19, 2001

Mr. Bob Trimm, Personnel Manager
Importers Inc.
587 Lilly Road

Dear Mr. Trimm:

Please accept this letter as an expression of interest in the position of Areas Sales Manager

I have enclosed a copy of my resume for your review. I am familiar with the requirements for success in the Sales profession and believe I possess the right combination of marketing and management skills.

My current position coordinating two local area sales teams has provided the opportunity to work in a high-pressure, team environment, where it is essential to be able to work closely with my colleagues in order to meet sales deadlines.

Thank you for your time and consideration. I would welcome the opportunity to personally discuss my potential contributions to your company with you. Please telephone me at (360) 352-0259 after 4.00 p.m. to suggest a time that we may meet. I look forward to your reply.

Sincerely,  

Kenneth Beare  

Enclosure

Writing Business Letters - English for Special Purposes Core Vocabulary

to

have the power to

we have received

hereby



we hope we'll receive the goods soon

in case of need

we look forward to your kind reply

in compliance with - accordingly

we must apologise for

in due time - in due course

we remain - our kindest regards

in good condition

we sent you

in our favour

we thank you in advance

in partial payment

we wish to inform you that

in reply to your letter

we would appreciate it if you could answer

in the absence of

we would appreciate your reply

to

inform in due time

with no obligation - without commitment

inside address

with reference to - in reference to

to

let someone know in advance

with the compliments of

letter opening - beginning of the letter

with the utmost care

letterheading - heading

with two weeks' notice

to

look forward to

within the end of the month

looking forward to an early reply

within which

looking forward to hearing from you

without delay

to

make the goods available

without notice

to

meet a demand

would you please let us have

to




meet customer's requirements

would you please let us know

to

meet the demand

you ordered

Messrs

you requested

to

notify in advance about

you sent us

on advanced payment

Yours faithfully (GB) - Yours truly (GB)

Sample 3.1 ó Letter of application, hard copy version

E-2 Apartment Heights Dr.
Blacksburg, VA 24060

(540) 555-0101
abcd@vt.edu

February 22, 2003

Dr. Michael Jr. Rhodes
Principal, Wolftrap Elementary School
1205 Beulah Road
Vienna, VA 22182

Dear Dr. Rhodes:

I enjoyed our conversation on February 18th at the Family and Child Development seminar on teaching young children and appreciated your personal input about helping children attend school for the first time.  This letter is to follow-up about the Fourth Grade Teacher position as discussed at the seminar.  I will be completing my Bachelor of Science Degree in Family and Child Development with a concentration in Early Childhood Education at Virginia Tech in May of 2003, and will be available for employment at that time.

The teacher preparation program at Virginia Tech includes a full academic year of student teaching. Last semester I taught second grade and this semester, fourth grade. These valuable experiences have afforded me the opportunity to:

  • develop lesson plans on a wide range of topics and varying levels of academic ability,
  • work with emotionally and physically challenged students in a total inclusion program,
  • observe and participate in effective classroom management approaches,
  • assist with parent-teacher conferences, and
  • complete In-Service sessions on diversity, math and reading skills, and community relations.

Through my early childhood education courses I have had the opportunity to work in a private day care facility, Rainbow Riders Childcare Center, and in Virginia Techís Child Development Laboratory.  Both these facilities are NAEYC accredited and adhere to the highest standards.  At both locations, my responsibilities included leading small and large group activities, helping with lunches and snacks, and implementing appropriate activities.  Both experiences also provided me with extensive exposure to the implementation of developmentally appropriate activities and materials.

I look forward to putting my knowledge and experience into practice in the public school system. Next week I will be in Vienna, and I plan to call you then to answer any questions that you may have.  I can be reached before then at (540) 555-7670.  Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,
(handwritten signature)
Donna Harrington

Enclosure

Sample 3.2  ó  Letter of application, e-mail version

April 14, 2003

Mr. William Jackson
Employment Manager
Acme Pharmaceutical Corporation
13764 Jefferson Parkway
Roanoke, VA 24019

jackson@acmepharmaceutical.com

Dear Mr. Jackson:

From your company's web site I learned about your need for a sales representative for the Virginia, Maryland, and North Carolina areas. I am very interested in this position with Acme Pharmaceuticals, and believe that my education and employment background are appropriate for the position.

While working toward my masterís degree, I was employed as a sales representative with a small dairy foods firm.  I increased my sales volume and profit margin appreciably while at Farmerís Foods, and I would like to repeat that success in the pharmaceutical industry.  I have a strong academic background in biology and marketing, and think that I could apply my combination of knowledge and experience to the health industry. I will complete my master's degree in marketing in mid-May and will be available to begin employment in early June.

Enclosed is a copy of my resume, which more fully details my qualifications for the position.

I look forward to talking with you regarding sales opportunities with Acme Pharmaceuticals. Within the next week I will contact you to confirm that you received my email and resume and to answer any questions you may have.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,
Lynn A. Johnson
5542 Hunt Club Lane, #1
Blacksburg, VA 24060
(540) 555-8082
lajohnson@vt.edu

Resume attached as MS Word document (assuming company web site instructed applicants to do this)



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