How to Write a Cover Letter That Works

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how-to-write-a-cover-letter-that-works-InsetWhen it comes to applying for new jobs, your cover letter does a lot of heavy lifting. Before your potential employer looks at your resume to see your skills and qualifications, they see your cover letter and learn a lot about you. Most importantly, they often learn at this stage whether or not they are going to give your resume any consideration at all.

At Liberty Staffing Services, we help job applicants find great positions every single day. We know the importance of a great cover letter.

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Let’s look at what works when it comes to putting together an effective cover letter. Tailor the Cover Letter to Each Specific Job

Technically, you can copy/paste the same cover letter for each position you are applying for, but that’s not a great strategy for several reasons. First, it comes across as a generic letter because there aren’t any specific details about the job or the employer. Second, it fails to highlight which skills you have that meet each role. Third, it is off-putting to hiring managers when they can tell that you’re doing this. 

Instead, customize your cover letter for each job application. You can usually keep a lot of the same content from one cover letter to the next, but change key paragraphs to highlight all the ways that your skills and experience align with the requirements of the role. 

Craft a Compelling Introduction

Spend a lot of time on that first paragraph. 

Your opening paragraph is what captures your reader’s attention. That is true for any type of writing, including a cover letter. You want to clearly state what position you’re applying for and why you are the ideal candidate. 

Showcase Your Skills, Including Your Soft Skills

Your cover letter is a great place to offer some additional detail about your work history, experiences, skills, and soft skills that the hiring manager might not notice in your resume.

Make sure to give some examples of how you were able to demonstrate your resume skills in your professional life. If you are new to the workforce, this is your chance to draw strong connections between things like clubs, teams, and volunteer roles with the entry level job you're applying for. 

Don’t forget to highlight your soft skills too. Talk about your ability to problem solve, think creatively, adapt to new situations, communicate effectively, and work independently and with a team. Today’s employers are searching for employees with these soft skills.

Prove That You Understand the Role and the Company

Demonstrating that you understand the role will impress the person reviewing your resume. We don’t mean that you should just quote the job description in your cover letter. Rather, you should use some keywords from the job description and explain how your experiences make you the perfect person to accomplish those tasks. 

Dropping in a few details about the company will help too. Spending just a few minutes on Google and the company’s website should give you some good information for your letter.

Keep It Concise and Organized

A long, rambling cover letter is not something that hiring managers want to see. 

Even though you want to squeeze as much into that cover letter as possible, you still have to be concise and to the point. A well-organized cover letter that is no longer than one page long will go a lot farther than a multi-page letter full of great information that the hiring manager is never going to read.

Remember that hiring managers speed-read through these applications, so you don’t want to give them too much text on the page. Your friends in the cover letter process are short paragraphs, articulate sentences, and plenty of white space.

Proofread, Proofread, Proofread

Grammar and punctuation errors are not a good look for your cover letter. Proofread to catch those mistakes. 

Some of the most important things to check are the spelling of the hiring manager’s name and the company’s name. Many people will put down a cover letter if they see their name or the company name misspelled because those errors make it seem like you don’t pay attention to detail. 

Double Check the Application Instructions

Speaking of paying attention to detail, some job listings will ask you to address specific things in your cover letter. The person reviewing these letters will be looking for those things, and your application may be tossed aside if you don’t meet those minimum application requirements.

Work With a Staffing Agency

A staffing agency is a great resource for job seekers, whether they are looking for full time or part time work, permanent or temporary positions. Staffing agencies not only have deep connections to the community and know about open positions before anyone else, but they can also help you with your application materials.

Liberty Staffing: Ready to Help You Find a Great Job

At Liberty Staffing Services, we work with candidates every day who are looking for work. We can help advise you of what to change, remove, or update on your cover letter and resume. Let us help you strengthen your cover letter so that it impresses the hiring team at the company where you want to work.

Reach out to us today to learn more about our services and how Liberty Staffing can help you find an incredible job offer.


Jodie Verberne

I’m the Office Recruitment Specialist in London. With over 5 years of professional experience working in many different professional industries from Automotive Production and Administrative Recruiting, I have been able to hone my skills in finding both employers and employees the right career fit. Having my hands in many different fields of work has given me a keen eye to better determine where a person’s skills and passions can be best put to use. Having obtained my BA in Sociology at the University of Western Ontario, I am able to identify the struggles and barriers employees may face in Ontario’s ever-changing job market. In my spare time, I enjoy working on my passion of content creation and video editing. I’m an avid gamer who loves to stream horror related titles as well as Fortnite with friends. I also enjoy cozying up with my dog Poe and reading a good book on rainy days.

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