How do you format a cover letter?


Quick Answer

All printed cover letters should be single spaced and contain a header with the applicant's contact information, a greeting, a closing and at least three paragraphs introducing the applicant and outlining his or her skills, education and experience. E-mail cover letters do not require a header and should include contact information below the signature.

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Full Answer

Applicants should include their contact information at the very top of the page. This includes information like address, phone number and e-mail address. They can format the text to the left of the page or at the center. Underneath their contact information, applicants can include the date.

Ideally, cover letters should address the person in charge of hiring. Applicants can include their name and the address of the business formatted to the right of the page, followed by a greeting that addresses the hiring manage by name.

The introductory paragraph is a very important part of a cover letter. This paragraph should introduce the applicant and explain why he or she is applying for the job. It can also state how the applicant heard about the position and a quick overview of why it relates to his or her experience.

The second paragraph is the essence of the cover letter. This paragraph makes an argument as to why the hiring manager should hire the applicant. It should tie the applicant's experience and education in with the needs of the organization. It is very important to argue how and why the applicant would be an asset to the organization.

The letter should close with a quick closing paragraph that restates a few of the key points of the letter and thanks the reader for his or her time. The applicant should close the letter with a formal closer such as "sincerely."

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