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How to Sign a Cover Letter: Paper vs Digital

How to Sign a Cover Letter: Paper vs Digital

Whether you're sending it in paper or digital form, here's how to make sure your cover letter's signature line is as professional as the rest of the letter.

When it comes to your cover letter, you usually have just one chance to make a good first impression.

That’s why you would want to make it all perfect.

You might think that your signature is not important, and it wouldn’t matter what you put there, but you can not be more wrong.§

As employers receive hundreds of resumes for every open job position they have, even the smallest detail might be used against you for the purpose of pre-selection.

So, how to perfect your cover letter signature?

Well, that depends greatly on the method you choose for sending your cover letter. So we are going to explore the 3 cases:

  • Signing your email cover letter
  • Signing your hard copy cover letter
  • Signing your uploaded cover letter

And as we go along, we are going to give you examples for each method.

If you have some doubts about your overall cover letter performance, that would be a good time to learn how to tell a story with your cover letter and build your perfect cover letter.

But if you are ready to dive into the details of your cover letter signature, stick around.

Do you need to hand sign your cover letter?

Every cover letter needs some kind of sign-off with at least a closing phrase and your names.

But apart from that, a hand signature inserted into your cover letter is entirely up to you.

If you are emailing your cover letter, your potential employer would not be expecting a hand signature. However, if you are mailing a physical cover letter, or uploading it, hand signing your cover letter can be a nice touch.

What to include in your cover letter signature?

What you include in your cover letter signature depends on the method you use for sending it over to your potential employer.

However, every cover letter signature should include a closing phrase and your names.

From this point forward, you can include a handwritten signature, or your contact information, depending on the type of cover letter you are sending.

If you have chosen to email your cover letter, it is nice to include your contact information just after your names, but you usually don’t need a handwritten signature.

And if you decide to mail a hard copy of your cover letter, it is a charming touch to include a handwritten signature, but don’t really need the contact information, as it would only clutter the page.

How to sign a cover letter when emailing?

When emailing your cover letter to a potential employer, it is essential for you to list your contact information in the bottom of your email.

At the very least, a hiring manager should be able to find your name, email address, and phone number, but you can also include an address, LinkedIn profile, or a portfolio.

Your contact information is so essential because the hiring manager would need to be able to easily contact you.

It would be a shame if you nailed your cover letter, and build a perfect resume, and the hiring manager has no way to contact you for an interview.

If you want to really nail it, you need to make sure you are sticking to the same font throughout, and not use anything too special in your signature, as it might come across as childish.

Last but not least, send out your cover letter using a professional email address. That does not mean that you need to use your work email address, as that would be a huge mistake.

To get the best result, use a free online email service like Gmail, and set up your email in the format firstname.lastname@mail.com .

Example

Just to make things easier on your part, here is how your email signature should look like:

Sincerely,

John Doe

john.doe@gmail.com

(555) 555-5555

And if you want to add in some additional contacts, you can do so by listing them below these like this:

Sincerely, John Doe john.doe@gmail.com (555) 555-5555 https://linkedin.com/in/john-doe

How to sign a paper cover letter?

When it comes to a hard copy of your cover letter, you no longer need to list the contact information in your signature. In most cases, both your contact information and that of the employer is listed at the top of the page.

Here, just like in any other cover letter sign-off, you need to add a closing phrase and your names.

What you can add here as a nice touch is including a handwritten signature.

Typically, you would want it to be positioned between the closing phrase and your full name, so make sure you leave enough space between the two for you to sign it after you print it out.

Example

And here is how your paper cover letter sign-off should look like:

Sincerely, (leave enough white space here) Jane Doe

So that when you print it out, you can add in your signature in the blank space.

How to sign a cover letter when it is an attached file

When you have decided to attach your cover letter to your email, or upload it to a job site, you can only type in a closing phrase and your names, and that would be perfectly fine for a signature.

However, a handwritten signature might really make some good impression on the hiring manager.

If you decide to go for it, you have two options:

  • Print out your cover letter with a structure for a hard copy, sign it and then scan it, and you are ready to upload it
  • You can sign on a blank piece of paper and scan it, and then insert it into your cover letter digital file

Either way, it would make a good impression.

Just make sure you leave enough blank space for a signature if you go for it.

Example

If you decide to go for the basic version of your cover letter signature, you just need that:

Sincerely, Jane Doe

But if you are determined to add in your handwritten signature, make sure you go for that:

Sincerely, (leave enough white space here)

Jane Doe

So that when you print it out, you can add in your signature in the blank space. And from that point forward, you only need to scan it, and you are ready to go.

Takeaways

We are all done, now you know how to get the best out of your cover letter signature.

Let’s go through the most important points once again:

  • If you are emailing your cover letter, make sure you list your essential contact information in your email signature, so that it would be easy for the hiring manager to contact you
  • If you are sending out a hard copy of your cover letter, you don’t need to list your contact information in the signature, but it is a nice touch to include a handwritten signature
  • When you are attaching your cover letter to an email, or uploading it to a website, you can go with the basics – closing phrase and your names, but it is again a nice touch to add your scanned signature to the document

Now upgrade your cover letter signature, and perfect your application documents to get your dream job.

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Evgeni Asenov
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