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Business Administration 106 - Written Business Communications - Cardona

This guide provides resources for students taking BUSAD 106 with Prof. Cardona.

What Is a Cover Letter?

A cover letter is an application document that provides space for you to connect your experiences, skills, abilities, and knowledge to a job. It also acts as an introduction to all of your other applications documents including your resume. It should not be more than a page long (3-4 paragraphs is best) and provide specific examples of how you can do the job and your qualifications for it.

Cover letters:

  • usually start as Word documents (read the employer directions if you need to convert to PDF)
  • use 11 point of 12 point font for easy reading
  • use a font like Times New Roman, Georgia or Cambria throughout the whole document (be consistent!)
  • are usually 1 page (unless you have more than 7 years experience)

Similar to an essay, cover letters have sections including:

  • Header to Cover Letter (who are you and contact information)
  • Greeting (Who are you writing to? A hiring professional or committee?)
  • Introduction (State position you are applying for and an overview of your expeience and skills connecting to the job)
  • Body (1-2 paragraphs that share the benefits of hiring you, specific examples of your skills related to the job using their language from job ad)
  • Closing (summarize your abilities and provide an opportunity to share more information in an interview or meeting)

Tips to Write A Cover Letter

  • Use the same heading and style as your resume for consistency
  • You can use AI to begin your cover letter BUT each cover letter should be customized for the job ad. Don't copy and paste without editing!
  • Make a list of the most important requirements, skills, and experience in the job ad. Look at your resume and match your experience and skills to the job ad. Explain the most relevant requirements in your cover letter
  • Use numbers, stats, and metrics to talk about your successes. For example: As a waitress at XYZ Cafe, I provided exemplary service to over 400 customers daily.
  • Check you spelling and grammar!
  • DO NOT include information about salary requirements or salary history, personal information such as marital status, children, religious preference, etc.

Adapted from Indeed Cover Letters, Indeed Career Guide, Penn Career Services, UT Austin Career Services, Texas State Career Services.

What Does a Cover Letter Look Like?

Most cover letters include the most relevant examples of your skills, experience, and knowledge related to the job you are applying for. You will also use the language from the job ad in your cover letter, for example, if they call customer service "customer support", use their term in your cover letter. Here is an example paragraph and opening from a cover letter:

Dear Morgan Smith,

I am a senior at ABC College studying History and Literature. I am writing to apply for the Marketing and Communications position at Jumpstart posted in ABC College's database. I'm very excited about the field of education, and would welcome the opportunity to bring my strong communication skills, creativity, and marketing experience to your growing team. Jumpstart's commitment to early education for every child is of particular interest to me because of my passion for youth development. This past summer, I worked as a senior counselor in the Summer Urban Program, which is dedicated to preventing summer learning loss for children in Los Angeles. I designed and taught fun, interactive classes to a group of 10 fifth graders, and planned and led local field trips and workshops daily with a junior counselor. Throughout the summer, I consistently strived to create math, science, and reading lessons and activities that were engaging and tailored to my students' needs.


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