The cover letter has gained momentum in today’s job searching world. It’s another way for candidates to stand out beyond their resume; it shows employers a more personal side of applicants and some extra details about why they are the best for the job. Some employers always look at cover letters while others don’t, but it is always best to attach one because it could be that letter that wins you an interview.

There should be three main paragraphs that get your point across. They don’t have to be extremely long, it’s better if they are concise and one page (nobody has time to read a three-page cover letter). Make sure to add the typical details on top of your cover letter including your contact information and the employer’s. Follow this by a professional introduction addressed to the hiring manager or person you would interview with, and try to use a specific name if you can find it.

Next are the three most important paragraphs:

Paragraph one: Introduce yourself. Tell them what job you are applying for and why you are interested in the position.

Paragraph two: Show why you are the perfect match for the job then prove it with specific achievements or list your skills and experience.

Paragraph three: Thank them for reading your cover letter and mention your attached resume. Don’t forget to directly tell them you are looking forward to an interview and when you will follow up with them.

Close your letter with “sincerely” or another professional closing. Include both your typed name and a scanned signature.

Your cover letter doesn’t have to describe everything that you have done; it is an introduction to you and highlights the top reasons why you are the right candidate. You can use your resume as a guide to what your key accomplishments are, but be careful to not only restate your resume – you will need to add some extra details.

A cover letter is not a one-size-fits-all letter, it will need to be tailored for every position you apply for.

What other tips do you have for what you should or should you not do when writing a cover letter?