Short Cover Letter Examples: How to Write a Powerful Cover Letter That Stands Out

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Apr 4, 2023 10 min read

Do you recall finding out you need to write a Cover letter for a job application and your whole body shivers with resistance?! We feel you. “I love crafting Cover letters,” - said no one ever. However, Enhancv PROs will let you in on the secrets to writing short and efficient Cover letters, which work even better than long ones.

Over the years, we have noticed that not only candidates are resistant to writing Cover letters - especially long ones - but the time-starved HRs too have developed a super low threshold of tolerance to reading them.

Solution? The short Cover letter. In recent years, more and more HRs and Career coaches speak of the value of the 3-sentence Cover letter.

In this blog post, we will go over:

  • A to-the-point, sealing-the-deal examples;
  • When to use a short Cover letter;
  • How long is too long;
  • How to become the master of CTAs;
  • What's the ideal structure of a short Cover letter;

First things first! Sit down, relax and let Enhancv guide you through a few killer-good short cover letters. Then, ready, steady, GO!

5 short cover letter examples for different industries

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#1 Art & Creative Sector

Dear Brian,

As you can see from my enclosed Resume for the position of Architect, amongst my multiple career highlights, one of the most astonishing to date is winning the Public Award at the prestigious World Architecture Biennale in Canne. This achievement was the crowning moment of 5+ years of mastering contemporary design solutions, which invigorate all my project work.

As a Lead Architect at Ya Designs, under my guidance, the team rolled out a five-year governmental residences project in Vienna worth $2, 000,000 with a 10% cost saving thanks to the high operationality of using cutting-edge design programs. Leading the Interior Designers team at Beautiful Home will give me an outstanding opportunity to do what I am best at - drive agile teams which create modern, eye-catching architecture while ensuring exceptional ROI.

We can arrange a call at your convenience so I can share my core 10+% cost-saving and Design team-building insights.

Sincerely, Tanita Villanueva

P.S. I’m also excited to discuss how my workshop “Innovation incubator” led to a 40% creativity boost in my team and doubled client conversions compared to 2021.

#2 ICT Sector

Dear Efrem,

In the attached Resume, you can get an overview of my career highlights and the most recent one - developing an AI tool for tackling Digital Recruitment bias for CorTexter. It is currently used across 4 EU countries (and growing!) and has skyrocketed my knack for designing cutting-edge, socially meaningful applications.

Becoming part of IBM is precisely where I envision my career. Joining forces with the other mega-talented team experts, I would wake up every day, translating my know-how into disrupting technologies. Supporting IBM to keep its leading position is a challenge I am bulletproof for.

Could we schedule a chat to discuss how my dedication, paired with a rare AI Design skillset, could benefit IBM in the war for AI talent with the right future skills?

Sincerely, Kamen Stoianov

P.S. I’d also be happy to introduce to you how my AI Digital Recruitment bias tool has enabled 5 international corporations to secure cost savings of $1 000,000 for 2020 thanks to preventing unsuitable or biased hiring decisions.

#3 Corporate Sector

Dear Jane,

Please, find my resume for the position of Business analyst. Among my TOP achievements is cost saving $2M per year by research, choice, and implementation of a brand new CRM solution. Furthermore, it has helped Verizon stop the negative trail of clients, discontinuing contracts, thanks to improved customer care. This consistent approach was the first of its kind in the company.

Getting on board with SiSoft during its rapid growth and international expansion is an inspiring opportunity for me to do what I am best at - completing organizational changes from scratch to end via my superior negotiation skills, stakeholder management, and cost-saving strategizing.

Let’s arrange a quick chat to discuss how my ability to form lasting business relationships with a view to goal achievement can help SiSoft.

Sincerely, Kylie Peterson

#4 Internship

Dear Sandra,

Attached you’ll find my resume for the position of summer IT intern. My dedication to programming dates back to my 13th year, culminating last month in winning the student Spring Cybersecurity challenge at Santa Monica College. I have succeeded in a fierce competition between 5000 fellow students, ranging from freshman, sophomore, and final year of their studies. In contrast, I was only admitted to the college last autumn.

Hewlett-Packard`s continual commitment to Corporate Responsibility and Young Developers talents programs is a 100% fit for my studies and my proven engineering and geeky skills.

I am excited about the opportunity to put my skills to work for you. So let`s have a quick chat to outline how I intend to support your organization with fresh programming approaches.

Sincerely, Stephen Alejandre

P.S. I’d also love to discuss how my volunteer work with a local high school in Philadelphia brings me enormous satisfaction by having the chance to teach programming skills to the broader community.

#5 Social work sector

Dear Peter,

My resume is attached for the position of Elderly House Director. After 20+ years in the Social care sector and successfully completing numerous EU projects for transforming elderly houses across the USA, I can say Nursing is far more than my profession. It is a significant part of my life. As a Managing Director at Lotus Care Housing, I minimized by 30% the rate of depression and anxiety of the inhabitants by implementing Wellness programs that rely on the latest methodologies for treating psychological disorders.

Leading the expert team of Home is a fantastic opportunity I am fully prepared to take to heart and make a pure success.

Can we arrange a call so I can also discuss how I implemented a center-wide improvement program at Lotus Care that benefited not only our elderly clients but the social workers as well?

Sincerely, Lara Samuel

The common thing between all the above short Cover letters is not only that they skillfully play with words, but they possess all the needed success elements:

  • Personal salutation - Dear (Hiring manager name)
  • 1st Paragraph: Straight-to-point intro and your biggest job-fit win
  • 2nd Paragraph: What will you ACHIEVE FOR THEM
  • 3rd Paragraph: Your fierce call to action
  • Formal closing
  • P.S. All-in with your 2nd value refueling CTA

More in detail on that you will find at the end of this post! But let`s first dive deeper into the other specs to turn you into an epic short Cover letter PRO.

When to use a short cover letter

Despite the heated debates that Cover letters are dead, and no one needs them, let alone - read them in 2022. In reality, as a FORBES article states,”83% of HR professionals think cover letters are essential when making hiring decisions”. Moreover, “7 in 10 recruiters expect to receive a cover letter even if they mark them as “optional” in job ads”. So, do send a Cover letter, even if it's not required - you'll gear yourself up for success.

Of course, that doesn't mean writing a Cover letter should be tiresome. We are so conditioned to overdeliver in our compulsive doers' society that we may often be compelled to crowd our Cover letters with any insignificant job we did or unrelated skills. Thinking this is a winning strategy, we shoot ourselves in the foot, as the opposite is true.

You will not disappoint HRs with a short Cover letter - they will LOVE you, as long as it is well-targeted, and we will teach you exactly how to do that!

Less is more when turning HR into your biggest raving fan. You can do just that with a short Cover letter that contains:

  • A carefully curated list of skills and achievements;
  • A powerful call to action.

So let's get one thing out the way, which not every advice out there tells you. Candidates are not only allowed but encouraged to send short Cover letters.


Using a short Cover letter definitely applies to entry positions where you don't necessarily have a long track record. Then you will need to choose 1 job-related skill or achievement and 1 inspiring call to action and spread that over 2-3 paragraphs maximum.

TOP-level position

High-level executives often have decades of experience in one or several sectors. In that case, it would be way too tedious and totally unnecessary to describe every single job-related success. So a juicy, glory-packed short Cover letter is applicable, where you can cherry-pick the top 3 mind-blowing work wins to boast with. This will surely be your pass to the organization.

When a Cover letter is not required

99% of candidates will tell themselves, “Thank God!” when they read a Cover letter is unnecessary and will drop just their Resume and go about their day. However, only 1% will put effort into writing a Cover letter that introduces them in a meaningful and powerful way. And Enhancv wants you to be one of these 1 % winners. So, once you've read all the PRO knowledge from this article, you can head directly to our FREE Cover letter builder.

As we already highlighted, it shouldn't be a novel-size letter. As a matter of fact, when it is not mandatory, you can embed your short (and sweet!) Cover letter right in the body of your email with the CV attached. That way, you make it easier for the Recruiter to see your TOP strengths right away.

How long is too long

Glad you asked! The general standard for Cover letter length is a maximum of 1-page. By all means, never go over 1 page.

What’s more, check whether your cover letter offers enough “breathing” space for your reader.

If you cram everything in a single block of text, your story would disengage the recruiter. Wouldn't you do it too? It's like being with a friend who never stops talking, and you have no chance to take the word.

Now, when we speak of short Cover letters, the recommended sweet spot length is around 150 words. Fascinating, isn't it? If you wonder how the heck you are to pack all the glory you've got to offer in that tight word count, bear with us! We are getting there soon! Meanwhile, you can take a look at our cover letter examples.

How to become the master of Call to Actions

The knack for writing a killer short Cover letter is making just the proper use of calls to action that are motivating enough for the Recruiter to pick up the phone and schedule an interview to get the info you promised.

In order to make engaging CTAs, you need to take care of a few things first:

  • Find out the organization's needs;
  • Research the job description;
  • Ponder on your expertise and achievements and identify how you are the missing piece;
  • TAKE YOUR TIME! Short cover letters are 90% strategy and 10% writing;
  • Make a proposition statement that powerfully connects you and the organization;
  • Indirectly suggest a follow-up contact with a promise to reveal some of your know-how;

Just take a quick look at these cleverly “served” CTAs from the above short cover letters template are:

We can arrange a call at your convenience, so I can share my core %10+ cost-saving and Design team-building insights.

PS: I’d also be happy to introduce to you how my AI Digital Recruitment bias tool has enabled 5 international corporations to secure cost savings of $1,000,000 for 2020 thanks to preventing unsuitable or biased hiring decisions.

What's the ideal structure of a short cover letter

We are sure we have already poked at your curiosity about how exactly to write your own short Cover letter. Here are the secret sauce ingredients that never fail:

  • Personal salutation - Dear (Hiring manager name)
  • 1st Paragraph: Straight-to-point intro and your biggest job-fit win
  • 2nd Paragraph: What will you ACHIEVE FOR THEM
  • 3rd Paragraph: Your fierce call to action
  • Formal closing
  • P.S. All-in with your 2nd value refueling CTA

Remember that to make your Cover letter even more compact, you can limit all the 3 paragraphs to one sentence each.

Personal salutation

Whether you write a short or a traditional Cover letter, and whether you enclose it in an email or send it as an attachment, one element should always be present - the personal salutation. It sets you up for success from Hello! You should always address it to the Recruiter's name; if you don't know it, try to dig it out. You can read more tips and tricks on how to do that in the Enhancv post Cover Letter Salutation That Entices the Recruiter to Learn More About You.

1st Paragraph: Straight-to-point intro and your biggest job-fit win

The second building block to your success is cutting all unnecessary details and, without further ado, going straight to the point. A short Cover letter consists only of high-value, high-vibe job-fitting achievements of you that keep the momentum up throughout the whole time. Hence, you can be sure it will keep the Recruiter wide awake like they have just drank two cups of the most robust Italian espresso.

It showcases only THE BEST OF THE BEST of your professional persona concerning the position you apply for.

It should be invigorating and lead them to invite you to an interview invitation and, ultimately, a job offer.

Hence, you need to make quite an appearance. So instead of entering the stage with the boring, overused and predictable “I'm writing to express my interest in the position of Key account manager that you advertised on LinkedIn”, you perform a short, adrenaline-infused demo of your best job-fitting achievement and/or skill.

Starting strong and to the point in combination with the short volume guarantees skillfully attracting the HR attention and waking their curiosity to learn more about you.

2nd Paragraph: What will your fit achieve for them

Once you've made a powerful entry from the first second, showing them in numbers and achievements you are the person they are looking for, it's crucial to keep the ball high in the second paragraph. That means you need to cut all trendy buzz-words like “detail-oriented,” “hard-worker,” and “stress-resilient.” Actions speak louder than words. So in this section, you will need to pick at least one of your relevant successes and assure them what exactly you will be able to do for them, thanks to your proven expertise.

3rd Paragraph: Your fierce call to action

Here is what, you reap what you sow. In other words, you invite the Recruiter to further contact you for the goodies you've got to offer.

Nonetheless, we do feel obliged to make an important disclaimer. Even if you are the most qualified candidate for the role in the world, grounded humility is still a nice-to-have. Moreover, you might lose some integrity if you opt for the overly aggressive Call to action, stating you will contact HR within a specific time to schedule an interview. You can proceed with such an approach only if you are 100% sure it is in line with the organizational culture, and the position you apply for requires you to model or even master such a behavior. Otherwise, overly intense CTA can seriously hurt your application.

The good news is that you can indirectly inspire HR to take your desired action without appearing overly pushy or cocky.

One more bonus insider secret: resist the urge to use larger-than-life statements like: “I am certain I am the best candidate for the role!” Usually, those backfire, as they sound unprofessional and very self-centered. So instead of telling this, the trick is to lead HR to draw the same conclusion based on the achievements and skills present.

Your actions should make it evident that you are the best!

Formal closing

A short cover letter closing should be just that - "formal." Your best bet here is always an official close-off salutation like "Best regards," accompanied by your name. We can't stress enough the need to befriend your eagerness and anxiety to get the role. Neediness repels; confidence attracts. Hence, your short Cover letter closing should carry a self-poised air of quiet but stable esteem. In other words, cut off any cheesy phrases like "I would be excited to get an opportunity to interview with you!", "Looking forward to hearing back from you" and "Thank you very much for the time to review my application." A simple "Thank you!" is a lot more powerful instead.

P.S. Go all-in with your second value refueling CTA

The short Cover letter, with its hype structure, offers the opportunity to add one more final adrenaline boost.

Your last secret weapon - the Post-script, has the same standing ovation effect a grand finale has on its audience in the ballet hall. You should definitely use the PS if you have a job-related achievement that would benefit the organization, which you can present to them at a meeting or an interview. By sharing a vital piece of information, you set positive expectations, which skyrockets you to the top of the Recruiter` shortlist.

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Make one that's truly you.
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Liliya Foteva
Work Psychologist and Grant writer with 10 yrs experience in the Corporate & Social domain. Communication is my middle name! I love to travel, read (usually a la playa :) ) and chill with friends!
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