You probably know that cover letters complement resumes and that recruiters just love asking for them. But why are cover letters important?
Well, because they are your chance of telling a story.
And let’s face it – listing different skills and achievements on your resume is essential. But connecting the dots in your cover letter and explaining what’s helped you gain expertise will make you stand out.
Read our proven Academic cover letter tips and examples below.
Make your academic cover letter stand out
At first, you may think that the cover letter should repeat all information from your resume but in a story-like form. However, that’s not true.
Instead of re-writing your resume, you need to focus on making the right impression.
You can do that by talking about the skills that help you overcome challenges, your excitement when it comes to the industry, your past achievements, and your knowledge of the company.
Now let’s look at some other things that will make your cover letter stand out.
We've made an in-depth guide on what should your cover letter include that you can check out!
Use an appropriate salutation and write a powerful introduction
Address your cover letter directly to the hiring manager, whenever possible. This has proven to be a good approach for two reasons.
First, it shows your attention to detail.
Second, it proves that you’re willing to do some research and go the extra mile for the sake of success.
But if finding the recruiter’s name is too difficult, you can go for a traditional gender-neutral phrase.
Here’s our selection of strong salutations. Feel free to borrow any of them:
- Dear Human Resources Manager,
- Dear Mr. Johnson,
- Dear Head of [team you're applying for],
- Dear Nathan Lovelace
A noteworthy introduction is what will grab the reader by the collar and make them want to get to know you better.
But what’s the best way to begin your cover letter? Highlighting your excitement about the position!
Be honest and original – this will get you remembered. You can even link your excitement to the reasons why you’d like to grow in this exact field.
Don't skip on your Academic soft and hard skills
While the resume is considered the best place to showcase your hard skills and achievements, the cover letter should tell a story and prove your enthusiasm for the field.
This is why we advise you to focus on soft skills and results. Think about all your soft skills and how they have helped you grow as a professional and crush your goals. Then turn this into your own very short success story.
Make sure to include some hard skills too, especially the ones listed as part of the requirements section of the job advert. This will guarantee that you pass applicant tracking systems (ATS) that screen applicant documents for keywords.
And remember – the cover letter should include new information without repeating your whole resume. It needs to offer additional value to the recruiter.
Show that you did your research before applying
Showing that you’ve researched the company and are familiar with it is a good way to prove your work-readiness.
It will also point the recruiter to the fact that your skills and qualifications will have a long-term impact on the company. Just link some of your strengths to the ways in which current or potential issues can be resolved.
Finish your cover letter with a call to action
Ending your Academic cover letter in a suitable way can help you land an interview. Why? Because strong endings portray applicants as considerate and, what’s even more important – passionate about the job.
Just make sure that your ending (just like your cover letter’s body) matches the company culture. If you prefer to be on the safe side, go for traditional closing lines such as “Looking forward to hearing from you”.