Part VI – Words Speak!

I have come across many (more than 80 percent) candidates begin their cover letters, “Please find the attached resume/cv, ….do the needful”. Don’t write such a letter. Do follow these basic guidelines:

  • Be clear and concise, and use a simplest conversational tone.

One of the major learning for the above guideline was at NITK, Surathkal from my guide and mentor Dr. S. Shrihari, Asst. Professor. He brought all publication writing to laymen understanding. He view to it was not one to prove – how good an individual is good at vocabulary, but to convey the message.  Another professor at IISc, Bangalore also had similar view – ‘Abstract of manuscript should be simple, crisp and understood by class eight student’.

We had invited for business development applications two months ago. We received application from students of computer science and electronics graduate. The subject line remained the same but the cover letter went to explain their interest in programming language. I wonder, if applicant made an effort to differentiate between the job description and application sent for.

  • Do I trust computer? Don’t solely depend on computer on spell check. It doesn’t distinguish ‘to’ from ‘too’, and if you leave the ‘s’ off of ‘she’, a spell check won’t pick up ‘he’.

I recall addressing ‘faculty’ as ‘faulty’ in a cover letter and realized during third proof check.

  • Know the interest limit

I would not suggest you limit to number of words for a cover letter. But definitely keep it less than one page or preferably half a page (No hard rule!). One has to identify how each geographical regions expects. I had received a cover letter to review from a Korean friend. I was taken by surprise seeing two page cover letter. With further discussion, I was informed about perceptions of employer in Korea. 

  • Follow up

Cover letter are general left for the mercy of employers. Would you consider such applicant?

  • Signature

One has to learn to differentiate the need to close the cover letter for PSU,  Start-up’s  and Pvt Ltd. In particular government organization skeptical about it. Few years ago, my applications for a position in government was rejected because of this  reason.

The personalized cover letter has to address one main question : What do I have in common with a potential employer? Is it a mutual acquaintance, a association at college or common interest.  This personal sentence will almost always assure that your letter is read. To master these skill sets contact Loratis Career School


Santosh A

Sr. Business Navigator

Loratis Career School

-Find Your True North!

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