50+ Cover Letter Examples for Any Job (+ Free Template Downloads) [2020]

cover letter examples

A cover letter (or application letter) is a professional letter written on behalf of a job seeker, speaking to the hiring manager or professional involved in reviewing the job application. This letter is an opportunity for the job seeker to speak to the potential employer and proactively “pitch” the reader on why the job applicant should be considered for the position.

The cover letter consists of two main paragraphs. The first paragraph or opening paragraph (or sometimes referred to as an introductory paragraph) is an opportunity for the job seeker to show the hiring manager they comprehend the business, job requirements, and expectations of the job or specific position in question. And the second paragraph or “body paragraph”, which provides the hiring manager and reader with insights to why the applicant is qualified and “better” than the other applicants for the job.

A closing paragraph is optional to include in a cover letter. While this last portion of the cover letter is called a “paragraph”, it should be a short sentence having a call to action to the reader. For example, mentioning available times for an interview.

Since a resume is attached to all job applications, the cover letter is a chance for the applicant to share their own voice with the prospective employer. The cover letter should provide insights that are not present on the resume.

Tip: Job seekers may want to consider performing an informational interview. This is an interview where a job seeker can ask questions to an employee who currently works at the company the job seeker is sending a job application to. This platform can provide insight that helps the job seeker align their cover letter and resume with what the hiring manager is expecting to see.

Cover Letter Writing Strategies

When writing a cover letter, it’s important to review the job posting (or job description), company mission, company values, and other relevant information about the company and job. This can help to:

Cover Letter Tips

Here are tips for turning a good cover letter into a strong cover letter.

Tip: Consulting a career expert or former manager can be a great way to judge your own cover letter. Write a cover letter first, then have an expert review it and provide feedback before submitting a job application.

Cover Letter Format

Contact Information
Phone Number
Email Address
LinkedIn Profile
(Optional) Professional Website

Dear Mr./Mrs. First Last Name (or "Dear Hiring Manager")

Opening Paragraph
The first paragraph should greet the reader and suggest an understanding of the job requirements. This paragraph should be no more than 150 words.

Second Paragraph
The body paragraph should contain relative work examples and career accomplishments that entice the hiring manager to read the resume.

Closing Paragraph
Thank the reader for their time. Suggest a desire to interview with the company as soon as possible.

Letter Closing
Sincerely/Yours truly

Typed Name or handwritten signature

Cover Letter Document Format

Below is a set of guidelines for the cover letter and document formatting:

Tip: As a cover letter writer, set reasonable expectations for yourself. There is no such thing as a "perfect cover letter" only an effective cover letter. Keep the letter focused and customized to the employer and hope for the best.

Cover Letter Examples

Below are a number of cover letter examples by job.

Popular Cover Letter Examples

Accounting Cover Letter Examples

Administration and Office Support Cover Letter Examples

Advertising, Arts, and Media Cover Letter Examples

Banking and Financial Services Cover Letter Examples

Call Center and Customer Service Cover Letter Examples

Community Services and Development Cover Letter Examples

Consulting and Strategy Cover Letter Examples

Education and Training Cover Letter Examples

administrative assistant cover letter example

Cover Letter Sample

Below is a sample cover letter.

Ian Smith
Sales Associate

May 1st, 2013

Dear Mr. Johnson —

I have always been told that I have a strong personality. One that is approachable, sociable, and more. This is why I feel like I'll be a perfect fit for your open Sales Associate position. I understand that the needs of the job are more than simply selling. But being a domain expert as well.

During my tenure as a previous Retail Associate I was able to:

  • Learn the inner workings of a highly detailed product and be able to sell it to customers.
  • Manage a sales floor as well as interact with customers and deal with customer support issues.
  • Collaborate, direct, and communicate efficiently to other retail and sales associates.
I look forward to interviewing with you. If there is any information that you'd like to see that I didn't include in my application, please feel free to contact me and I will return that to you as soon as possible. My enclosed resume should provide more insights into my career achievements for you.

Ian Smith
free cover letter template

Free Cover Letter Template Download

Download this cover letter letter template in Word format. Can be imported as a Google Doc. Instant download. No email required.

Download Template

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author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is an experienced executive who has spent a number of years in Silicon Valley hiring and coaching some of the world’s most valuable technology teams. Patrick has been a source for Human Resources and career related insights for Forbes, Glassdoor, Entrepreneur, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, and many more.


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