If you’re working on a cover letter, you’re probably asking, how long should a cover letter be? You’re probably wondering what you should and shouldn’t say in it.
But first, in other to understand how long should a cover letter be, one should understand what a cover letter is and what its purpose is.
So What’s The Purpose of A Cover Letter?
This is often a requirement for getting a publishing deal or a job. The cover letter is often sent along with the resume. But sometimes, you only need to send it with your writing sample.
Your cover letter is an opportunity for you to highlight your qualities and especially make your work valuable to the literary magazine or the company. This increases your chances of being called for an interview.
More important facts about a cover letter you should know.
- Your resume intends to emphasize the facts, but a cover letter is supposed to emphasize more of your personality and your work.
- A cover letter is your first introduction to one who intends to employ you, so the goal should be to make your cover letter as unique and worth remembering.
- Your cover letter should make the employer curious, captivated and interested in you.
Is A Cover Letter More Important Than A Resume?
The cover letter is a means for you to establish communication with the recruiter. Many even believe that the cover letter is as or more efficient than the resume. This is because it is more personal and goes beyond listing data such as previous training and experience, as happens in the curriculum.
With the letter, besides being able to present your professional history, you can tell how important the job is and how you can contribute to the development of the company with your work.
It can also clarify how the new job will help you with your future goals and how prepared you are for it.
By now, you probably have a faint idea of the length of your letter. But even then, we shall address the topic in detail.
How Long Should A Cover Letter Be
The length depends on the depth of experience and what the interviewer wants. While some want one-page cover letters, others want two or more. But sometimes, the length isn’t specified. In such a case, you can write down the most important facts and hope for the best.
Typically, the cover letter should be no longer than three or four paragraphs. Try to synthesize your ideas, after all, recruiters receive several cover letters. Often, they stick to those that offer more consistent content and can yield a good interview . \
So make your cover letter as brief as can be, while also putting all the necessary details into it. Do not go about giving unnecessary details. The most important to know is what the company needs. Your brevity should have that information emphasized in it.
So perhaps, you should stop agonizing over the question, and just get to work.
In as much as this is a valid question, I believe the real question should be what makes up a cover letter. And how can one write a good cover letter?
A Step-by-Step Guide To Writing A Cover Letter That’s The Perfect Length.
First, there are steps to write a cover letter, and in considering the page length of your query letter, it is advisable that the following be take care of.
Address a Person and Highlight the Company or Organization’s Name
To make communication more personal, always give the name and position of the person – or department – to whom you will send the letter. If you do not know this data, no problem: start the text with “Dear Acquisition Editor” or “Dear Recruiter” or “Dear Recruiter”.
Beginning the letter with ‘To whom it may concern’ disconnects you immediately to whom you are writing to. Irrespective of how you got the information to apply for the job, make an effort to address your letter to someone.
It would establish a solid communication so that whoever is receiving it would feel connected to you, and connection improves your chances of being accepted.
Show Your Skills, Experience, and Competencies
This is the perfect time to get the recruiter’s attention, and you should take the context to talk about your strengths and show that you are prepared for this new career challenge.
Write the letter with professional and personal characteristics that make the reader consider you for the intended position. Put yourself out there in the best way possible.
If you’re applying to a literary magazine, you might not need to mention your strengths and weakness. However, it is an important aspect of a cover letter intended for a regular HR officer.
So talk about your strength and weaknesses. Make sure to start with your weaknesses, as as to end on a good note — with your strength.
Also, make sure that the weaknesses you mention can be considered positive, in the sense that it is not something that affects what you can give, but rather a particular reluctance for a valid reason.
Match Your Letter To The Opportunity You Are Applying For.
Show your willingness and interest in the job you are applying for. Use your cover letter to briefly demonstrate that you know their products or services.
While speaking of your qualities and skills, associate them with the needs and the job requirements of the organization. Show that the skills and experienced which you have are in line with what the organization needs.
It is usually advised that a cover letter should be written specifically for a particular job. Do not use the cover letter sample written for another job.
Show How You Can Help The Business Develop.
Contextualize by showing how you are willing to contribute to the development of the sector/area. Tell the recruiter how you will do it. While showing off your skill and dexterity in a cover letter, do not forget to write about how that skill benefits the organization you are applying to.
These things go a long way in determining the page length of your cover letter.
All they want to know is how you can help build and develop their organization. So tell them that you can. Align your experiences to their field. In doing this, make reference to your resume.
Encourage the recruiter to read your resume as you talk about how you can develop their organization. Remember that everything and more should be in the resume. Therefore, encourage the recruiter to read your resume.
Send a Positive and Optimistic Message
Never speak ill of previous companies. Stick to positive messages and highlight your potential for this new moment in your professional life.
Positivity speaks a thousand words. If you bring in negativity, it would decrease your chances of being considered. Always stay positive, optimistic and appreciative.
Positivity and optimism also involve you announcing your anticipation for an interview. Ask for an interview or a meeting. Make sure to do so in a polite way.
Be Aware of The Correct Use of Language.
The first impression is always the one left, and by the cover letter, you will be evaluated. Therefore, be careful about the correct use of language and prefer to keep a formal tone in the text.
It is important to consider the segment of the company and try to adjust the tone of the language. Make use of proper grammar, punctuation, and tone.
You would be considered by all this. Your use of proper language increases your chances of being called for an interview. Also, make sure your tone stays formal.
Slipping between formal and informal would be careless and considered unethical by the recruiter.
Review Before Submitting
Before sending the cover letter, reread it several times to avoid grammatical errors. You may call on someone for assistance. Editing is very important.
You do not have to do it alone. Make sure that it is as perfect as can be. Also, be certain that every information given there is genuine. Place the information in a logical order. So that the reader can easily make connections.
Remember to sign the letter. Unlike the curriculum, which should not be signed, this document must be signed at the end.
If you have been nominated by a company employee or someone else from the company contact network, you can mention this in your cover letter. Obviously, this won’t make much of a difference in the word count of your submission or application letter.
Many organizations continue to value this type of initiative as they find their chances of adapting to the new work environment greater.
Choose the Best Channel to Send Your Cover letter
It is common today to send cover letters by e-mail, but if you need to print for personal delivery, use good quality A4 paper.
Once again, make sure there are no mistakes or misinformation in your cover letter. Once you are discovered, it automatically ruins your chances of ever being considered.
Wrap Up On How Long Should A Cover Letter Be.
Cover letters are an important part of every application. Whether it’s literary submission or an MFA application, you need to write a great cover letter the editors cannot resist.
Ensure that it states the exact kind of material you’re submitting. Is it a short story or a novel? What’s the length of the piece you’re submitting? Ensure that your cover letter also includes a brief summary of the piece you’re submitting. Also, include a brief bio. Your author’s bio should outline your experience as a writer and your awards too.
Don’t forget to wrap up your letter with a nice thank you note.
Have you written a successful cover letter lately? What did you write about it? Did you agonize over the question, what length a cover letter should be? Or did you just write about the important things? Let us know in the comments section below.