A cover letter is a great way to show your level of interest in a position and highlight some of your more relevant experience. It serves as a personalized addition to your resume that outlines your personality, demonstrates your knowledge of the company, and illustrates some of the reasons you would be a good fit for the position due to your skills and career accomplishments. You should always include a tailored cover letter. It may even determine whether or not a hiring manager decides to view your resume. But exactly how long should a professional cover letter be?
There’s no need to write a novel, best practice for cover letter length is between around 200-250 words. This length optimizes the effectiveness of a cover letter, allowing hiring managers to properly gauge your background and skillset enough to know that your qualified for the position, pushing them to want to learn more about your background. Along with some professional information about yourself, you should also tailor each cover letter to the position and company you’re applying to.
Make sure to align your skills and accomplishments with the job description, but don’t copy paste anything. Include your interest in the specific position at that company, and even mention something company specific to highlight the fact that you’ve done your research. You shouldn’t feel the need to write a whole paragraph, but including your alignment with the company goals or objectives really adds a personal touch to cover letters.
Keep your cover letter to one page, ensuring that it’s concise so that the hiring manager can efficiently read through it. Though hiring managers will often spend some time reading through a cover letter, an overly lengthy one could immediately put hiring managers off. Your cover letter shouldn’t be a reiteration of your resume, this is a chance to really highlight the skills that make you a good candidate for this position. A cover letter can also be used to explain information that doesn’t fit anywhere in the resume, but make sure to keep it professional.
With these tips you’re sure to write a great cover letter tailored to your dream job position. And if you want the too long, didn’t read version, just remember to create a one-page cover letter between 200 to 250 words.