Steps in Writing an Entry-Level Cover Letter
Steps in Writing an Entry–Level Cover Letter
One of the struggles of an entry-level job seeker is writing the cover letter. A cover letter is one of the tools needed in job-seeking along with the resume or curriculum vitae. Entry-level job seekers feel shy and inferior about their cover letter in applying for jobs because they have a limited experience compared to other job seekers.
During job seeking, a portfolio is one of the things you prepare. It is a compilation of all your necessary documents. This includes your cover letter, credentials, sample works, and resume. Your portfolio aims to highlight your qualifications and skills creating a great first impression on you. Thus, you should carefully write your cover letter as this will be a great part of your professional portfolio.
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Heads up entry-level job seekers, we will discuss each step in writing a cover letter. We will help you build your confidence in applying for that entry-level job. There are four (5) easy steps in writing an entry-level cover letter.
Step 1: Use a professional format in writing the cover letter.
Letters have different formats but since the cover letter will be a part of your candidate portfolio, you need to use a professional format to write it. Start writing in the top left portion of the paper. First, write your full name, address with zip code, and your contact information, which could be emailed, phone number, or both. Then, put the date. Next, write the name of the hiring manager or CEO of the company, their position, the company address. After, use a professional salutation by writing the position of the hiring manager or the CEO and their last name. Research first who is the hiring manager or interviewer so that you can specifically address them in the cover letter. Lastly, for this part, write an opening professional greeting like simply saying “Greetings!” or “Greetings of hope and peace!”.
Step 2: Be direct and express your interest in the position.
This is the start of your cover letter body. Employers and hiring managers read a lot of cover letters in a day. That is why you should be direct to the point from the start and clearly state what is your reason for writing the letter. Express your interest and excitement for the position. Write how did you know about the vacancy and explain why do you want the specific position in the specific company. Tell them why you are the best candidate and finish your first paragraph on how this position is related and aligned with your career path.
Step 3: Highlight your knowledge and skills.
We are now in the second paragraph of your cover letter. This is the meat of your letter. This is the part where you will make a detailed explanation and description of the extent of your professional knowledge, what are your recent experiences from your On The Job Training (OJT), your specific skills and strengths. Knowing that you can only offer a limited experience because you are an entry-level job seeker, make sure you showcase what you can do if you are hired and that you have the necessary qualifications for it. Research the job description of the position you are applying for and connect it with your skillset. Make sure that all details you are provided are relevant for the position because not all skills are needed for a certain position. Focus first on the general down to the specific ones.
Step 4: Call to Action
This will be your third and last paragraph. In this part, you need to attract and convince the employer or the hiring manager that you want to be a part of the company and you have researched it. You need to persuade them that your professional ethics are aligned with the company’s values and practices. End your letter by asking for an interview. Thank them for considering your application and for the time. Tell them that you attached your requirements like resume and credentials for reference. Along with that, tell them you are free anytime at their convenience for any inquiry and clarifications and give your contact number or email address. Since your letter is using a professional format, end it with a signature line saying “Respectfully or Respectfully yours” then your name and your physical signature.
Avoid these closing salutations in writing your cover letter:
Step 5: Check and proofread
We know you are excited to send it and be the first one to submit a cover letter for the job. Don’t be in a rush, double-check your letter as the correctness of your letter will impact what kind of professional you are. Check the following details of your letter before submitting:
- The cover letter format, make sure all essential parts of the letter are present, the spacing, indentions, and capitalizations. Mind also the format of the document itself since cover letter now is just sent electronically so make sure it is in a universal format that is compatible with any versions like a PDF.
- The grammar of the content. Wrong grammar and wrong spellings convey wrong messages. Make sure that you have correct subject-verb agreements and correct use of words.
- The specific details of the content. This is the importance of researching the company background, its organization, and its business. Check out the names you have put in there, the specific company values, and the name of the company itself.
If you have already checked all these things, your cover letter is ready to go. In writing an entry-level cover letter, you must capture the attention of the hiring managers. Thus, it should be brief, simple but smart. It should only be one page because hiring managers do not have that luxury of time to read long letters. In the end, your cover letter should accomplish the following things:
- Upon reading your cover letter, it should leave the potential employer that you are the candidate they are looking for.
- They should be convinced that you want the position and that you want to be a part of the company.
- The cover letter should land you for an interview.
The next time you write an entry-level cover letter, do not just free flow and write. Bear always in mind that your letter is your professional reflection. Be formal and courteous all the time, write a letter that is worth time to read. By this, employers and hiring managers will also appreciate your time and effort in making your cover letter. As they always say, walk your talk. Hence, if you say you are a professional then start with the cover letter. Start writing your professional entry-level cover letter.
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