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What & Why’s of Cover Letters

Trevor 7 comments

What is a Cover Letter & Why you should be including them in your resume submissions.

A cover letter is a single page introductory letter for your potential employer that supplements your resume. This should always be included in every job application because it introduces yourself by highlighting important skills and capabilities, and how they are applicable to the position you are seeking to fill. Above all else, a cover letter is relevant because it requests an opportunity to meet with the employer personally.

Types of cover Letters

An Application letter is written to apply for a specific job opening. Since you know what job you are applying for and the qualification the employer is looking for, use the cover letter to expand on why you are the best suited candidate. Include examples of past experiences that are relevant to the job, your skills and abilities, and how you would become an asset to the company.

A Referral letter mentions the name of a person who referred you to a job. Recruiters are more likely to hire someone based on a referral from someone they know, so don’t miss the opportunity to get an interview by not mentioning who spoke to you about the job opening.

A Letter of interest, also known as prospecting letter, inquires about possible job openings at the company. These are letters sent to companies that have not announced job openings; but you can still send them your resume preemptively for when they are hiring. These letters should include why the company interests you, and how your skills and capabilities can turn into assets for the company. It’s important that your contact information is absolutely clear in the event that they wish to follow up with you. It’s also important to note that most companies archive these resumes into their database for future references.

A Networking letter requests job search advice and assistance. These letters simply state how you acquired the recipient’s contact or who referred you to them, and describes your objective or purpose for reaching out. It should then make a request for information or advice, followed by a ‘thank you in advance’.

A Value proposition letter is a brief statement explaining what makes the candidate unique. This is a 100-150 word statement that concisely explains why you are the ideal candidate. Within the statement, include information such as your skills, strengths and experiences.


sources: Writing Center University of Wisconsin & About Careers