Cover letters can differ in their content and composition based on their purpose and the circumstance in which they are sent. You need to first understand which type of cover letter is appropriate for your situation. Sometimes, recruiters themselves specify the application format they are expecting. Whether they expect a particular Subject line like including the job code or reference id of the position, or the cover letter as an attachment with the email, or in a particular file format like .doc, .docx or .pdf are all you need to find out before sending out a job application. Your negligence in noting such specifications can even cost you your job.
Types of cover letters
Read ahead to know about some of the most used types of cover letters.
This is the most common type of cover letter used by job seekers. This type of cover letter is written in response to a job offer or advertisement. Therefore, it should include your professional skills and academic qualifications relevant to the job opening you are applying for. Because this is sent in response to an advertisement, it is obvious to generate hundreds of responses Hence, you need to carefully and wisely frame your application letter in order to stand out. Read carefully the job description and find out what skills and qualities the employer is looking for in the ideal candidate. This should help you with your resume as well as the cover letter.
Prospecting Letter or Letter of Interest
This type of letter is similar to an application letter only that it is sent not in response to a job opening advertisement. If you have a particular skill and/or work experience and are in the lookout for a job, you may send out letter of interest to prospective employers to inquire about any possible opening that you will fit in and to express your interest in working for that company. Any number of such letters can be sent out. However, there is no guarantee that such applications will fetch you a response. But if you’re lucky enough, you might be one of the few candidates being considered for a job vacancy in one of the companies.
This type of cover letter is more casual and personal in nature and is sent with the motive of building relationships with other professionals in the industry. Although it might not immediately land you an interview, it is a good practice to keep your network strong in the light of future opportunities that might come your way. LinkedIn, Zerply etc. are some effective social platforms that help in professional networking.
Referral letters are like testimonials or recommendation written in favor of your skills and potential by someone who has closely worked with you in the past or knows your work skills. Such type of letters is very powerful and can raise your value as a potential candidate for the interview. Referral letters can be the result of your effective networking with other qualified professionals in your industry.