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Writing a Cover Letter After College: How to Stand Out

Writing a cover letter that helps you stand out from the crowd of all the applicants is an excellent way to raise your chances of getting hired for the job you want. While having a decent resume is already good enough, try to take all the opportunities you get to make yourself noticeable during the selection process. In a recent poll, 53% of employers admitted they prefer candidates who attach a cover letter to their application. Therefore, you should regard the experience of writing this letter as your time to shine and prove you are qualified enough to take up the position you are after.

Develop a Good Structure

To make sure that your cover letter is easy to read and remember, you need to work on the structure of your writing. Recruiters have to go through tens of cover letters daily, and they don’t have the time to read every letter in detail. That’s why it’s crucial to highlight somehow the information you want to be noticed, whether with the help of bullet points, enumeration, bold font, or some other formatting feature. However, if you struggle with writing a powerful cover letter, there is always the option of turning to an affordable essay writing service like that will take care of the matter for you.

Don’t Write a Resume Summary

Many people make the mistake of reiterating the content of their resume in their cover letter, which is both illogical and impractical. This contradicts the very point of a cover letter: it is supposed to function as an addition to the resume, a source of unique information about your relevant experience, and the things that “make you a perfect fit for the job.” With the cover letter, you also get a great chance to demonstrate your attitude to the job, show your genuine interest in the position, and present your personality to the potential employer.

Keep It Sweet and Short

As painful as it may be, there is a high chance that no one will read your cover letter. However, in 90% of cases, attaching a cover letter is a must. If you want to raise the chances for a recruiter to at least open your cover letter, make sure to keep it short. Recent statistics prove that long cover letters don’t get read. Your cover letter does not even have to be a separate file; it can also be a passage that you write when sending your resume to the employer via email. The main point here is to show that you are genuinely interested in the job, not to give the recruiter loads of text to go through.

Mention You’re Relevant Accomplishments

A cover letter provides you with an excellent opportunity to prove your soft and leadership skills. You can mention some recent awards you received for doing your job well. And for those who are fresh out of college – mention some relevant competitions you took part in. For example, if you are applying for a writing-related job, say some of your published articles and the accolades they received for them. Additionally, you can also highlight some journalism/writing contests you participated in. It will show your potential employer that drive for improvement and competition you have.

Avoid Cliché Phrases

There is a list of standard phrases every second person uses in their cover letter. They are so cliché that rather than being of benefit to you, they might do some damage to your cover letter. Among those phrases are “I am a team player” and “I am a people-person” – these are rather generic, and you don’t give any proof for that. Additionally, avoid saying “I would be a good fit” since that should be up to the employer. Instead, prove WHY you are a good fit for the position. Finally, make sure your cover letter is personal and is addressed to a specific recruiter. Phrases like “To whom it may concern” make it very impersonal.

Get Creative

In this day and age, being creative is crucial since it is the best way to stand out and make sure people notice you even if you do not have enough expertise in the area. Being new to the employment market, you will not necessarily be that noticeable because of your qualifications or former job experience. That’s why you need to put in extra care to show that you ARE, in fact, unique because of your driven personality, outstanding motivation, and high energy levels. Your cover letter gives you an excellent opportunity to demonstrate your creativity, but make sure to make your creativity relevant to the job you are applying for. The task is to help the future employer see that unlike many other employees, you can approach situations from different angles and offer creative business solutions to your company. Consider reviewing some cover letter examples and writing something completely different and new; it will definitely draw attention. You don’t even have to stick to the standard cover letter structure, as long as you introduce yourself as a worthy opponent to your competition and someone worthy of the job – your cover letter did its job well.

Consequently, as someone fresh out of college, you will not be expected to present a lot of relevant work experience (although some internships would be very handy here). In any case, there is still a lot you can do to get noticed, even if you are a bit underqualified for the job. Your cover letter is only one of the ways for you to show yourself as a go-getter, someone who doesn’t take “no” for an answer and has this can-do personality that is wanted in the current employment market. Use this opportunity to prove your potential employer that they will make an excellent investment in the future of their own business by giving you a chance to grow and develop professionally while being a part of their company.

About Marta Sebos