A job application letter, often synonymous with cover letter, is a job application document sent along with a CV to hiring companies.
Sending a job application is imperative for landing a job interview.
Nowadays, the majority of employers ask for an application letter that helps them to shortlist job seekers for the final interview call.
While a CV focuses on highlighting information about your work history, accomplishments, skills or qualifications, a job application letter mainly explains that what makes you a potential candidate for the job opening.
It also gives an insight into why you are interested in the job opening, your career summary and how you are apt for the job. (You can also read How To Answer Common Interview Questions With Ease)
How To Write Application Letter For A Job Vacancy
If you have ever scribbled any formal letter in your life, it will be natural to just start off with your address at the top right side of the page.
This is the standard, although some format might have it at the left-hand side. Ensure you include your contact information (phone number, email and residential address) here and the date.
Your Addressee’s Address or Employers Contact
This is pretty much easy as your own address. On the left-hand side of the page, add your employer’s contact information or the Human Resource Manager’s contact information depending on who you are addressing the letter to.
Most times it is not always the HR personnel that handles the recruiting. The managing director might just choose to handle it on a short term basis.
As a rule of thumb and as courtesy demands, you must salute your prospective employer or HRM. So for a salutation, you use your employer’s last name with the prefix “Dear Mr/Mrs/Miss/Ms/Prof/Dr. /Eng./Senator.”
As the case may be. For e.g. “Dear Professor Curtis or Dear Mrs. Anna” It is always advised that you should mention the name of the recipient to give it a personal touch. However, if you are not sure of the gender, profession or status of your employer, you can make do with a generic salutation like “Dear Sir/Ma”.
Body Of The Letter
Opening Paragraph: In this paragraph, you will state the position you are applying for and where you saw the job advert. It serves as the introductory section and should be brief.
Second Paragraph: This is like the core of the letter. Here you will state why you are applying for the job and how you fit the description perfectly. Mention any accomplishments you have had in your career or how your skills saved a company you previously worked for in your application letter for a job vacancy.
Employers love to hear about your achievements as they are assured that your addition to the company will make the firm more successful. You can also add some minor details of the information you gathered about the company’s values as part of what you stand for and what you will be doing while you are working. This will give you an edge.
Third Paragraph: This paragraph is a sequel to the second paragraph where you can add a few of the skills you possess which are in line with what the company wants. With your skills having a potential synergy with what the organization or company does, it makes your HR feel like you are someone to be taken seriously.
The reason for this third paragraph is to ensure you don’t get your letter cluttered and choked up with words that will make readability a major problem. This is why you have to split it into a third paragraph. The spacing will enhance readability and make it look professional.
In conclusion, be grateful to your potential employer for taking the time to hear you out and thank them for considering you. The closing paragraph is usually short, it is just meant to express your gratitude in advance. Also, take this opportunity to convey your eagerness to appear for the interview.
Although this is will not guarantee you due consideration, it’s just a formal courtesy to show how appreciative you can always be. You can also offer a piece of follow-up information; when you can be contacted or interviewed.
You remember the orthodox “yours sincerely” in letters, right? This is the part where you use it and add your name after it.
After the complimentary closing, you can wrap the entire letter up with your signature either handwritten or scanned.
Recruiters have very limited time, so ensure you keep your application letter short and straight to the point. They don’t need to know the names of every relevant company you have worked for that is what your CV is for.
What Employers Look for in Application Form
Hiring managers consider two key points, which are:
Do Your Skills Meet The Job Description?
Instead of going through thousands of CVs for filtering the best candidates, application letters are quick and reliable options to verify if the candidate meets job criteria. Therefore, to understand your eligibility for a job opening, it is vital to read the job description properly before applying for it.
What Makes You Stand Out From Other Candidates?
A glance at the application letter enables the recruiter to compare your work experience and other details that reveal your potential for getting shortlisted.
Things To Avoid While Writing An Application Letter
Make It Brief But Explicit
Don’t try to make an epistle out of your qualifications, your CV has got all that covered already. Make things as comprehensive as possible. We live in a fast-paced world. Most of these HR’s have issues with patience and so if your application letter is unnecessarily lengthy, they might just pass.
Formatting Is Of Essence
Make use of a readable font style and size. Punctuate properly. After writing your letter, go through it again and again. View the letter from the lens of an HRM and ask yourself if you can actually hire the person who brought in the letter. This will make you revert and possibly make some vital changes that will make the difference.
Avoid High-End Vocabularies
Even though you are a grammarian and the prospects of winning the next best diction of the year are very high kindly save it while writing a j0b application letter. Nobody has that time to start checking dictionaries for the jargon/terminologies you are using. Tone your vocabs down and make your letter as simple as possible.
Tip On How to Successfully Write A Job Application Letter
1. Salutation/Job Title/Contact details
It is always advised that you should mention the name of the recipient to give it a personal touch.
2. Don’t create a replica of your CV
Remember, you are not creating a copy of your CV. Hence, provide the highlights of key points in your CV and not the entire detail mentioned in it.
3. Keep focus crystal clear on the first and last paragraph
As it is said, the first impression is the last impression. In the case of a job application letter, along with the opening lines, the strength of closing lines also matters a lot. In the end, the employer should be able to find a promising candidate in you, thus convincing him/her to shortlist your letter instead of sending it to the trash can.
4. Keep it short and sweet
No employer is interested in reading irrelevant content. Therefore, do not increase the length of your application letter by including information that doesn’t support your selection for an interview call. Keep it brief and stick to relevant points only.
5. The format is important
A messy format of an application letter is a major turn-off for employers. Keep it organized to look neat and leave proper space between paragraphs. Make sure it is free from any typo or grammatical errors.