Samples of the Best Cover Letters
Cover Letter Examples Listed by Type of Job and Letter
When applying for a job, you should always include a cover letter. Even if a job listing does not specifically request a cover letter, it can be a terrific way to summarize your skills and experiences, and explain (in more detail than a resume) why you are an ideal candidate for the job.
It's important to write a letter that specifies what makes you one of the best candidates for the position. Your cover letter should be well written, and should be targeted to the position for which you are applying.
Make connections between your experiences and the skills required to excel in the job. Your cover letter is one of the first thing the hiring manager will see (along with your resume), so make sure it grabs the reader’s attention.
Use these cover letter samples to get ideas for your own cover letters, so you can show employers why you should be selected for an interview.
How to Use Cover Letter Samples
Cover letter samples are a great place to start before writing your own letter. Read through some of the samples below, focusing on ones related to your industry.
These samples can help you format your letter. They can also give you ideas for the language you might want to use, and the information you should include.
However, be sure to customize your letter to fit your own skills and experience, and the job for which you are applying. You can also alter the format of a resume example. For instance, if the example has three paragraphs, and you only want to include two paragraphs, you can do so.
Also be sure to read this list of tips for writing a strong cover letter, and this detailed cover letter guide. If you are having trouble with a particular section of your cover letter, check out these articles on cover letter salutations, cover letter closings, and parts of a cover letter.
Best Cover Letter Samples
Review an alphabetical list of great cover letter examples listed by occupation, as well as by type of cover letter.
Use these examples to get ideas for your own cover letters.
A - E
· Academic Advisor
· Academic Cover Letter
· Academic Cover Letter (science)
· Administrative Coordinator
· Admissions Counselor
· Applying for More Than One Job
· Athletic Director
· Biomedical Engineer
· Block Format Cover Letter
· Business/Technical (with referral)
· Camp Counselor
· Career Change
· Cold Contact Cover Letter
· College Graduate
· College Graduate
· College Student
· Communications Director (email cover letter)
· Construction Management
· Customer Service
· Database Administrator
· Development/Museum Position
· Director of Operations
· Editorial Assistant (email cover letter)
· Education/Alternative Education
· Email Cover Letters
· Employee Referral
· Entry Level (analyst)
· Entry Level (finance)
· Entry Level (marketing)
· Event Planner
F - M
· Faculty Position
· Finance Internship
· Flight Attendant
· Front End Web Developer
· Golf Caddy
· Hair Stylist
· Higher Education Communications
· Information Security Analyst
· Informational Meeting Request Letter
· Internal Marketing (with referral)
· Job Promotion Cover Letters (communications and retail)
· Job Transfer Request Letter
· Job Transfer Request Letter Example (relocation)
· Letter of Interest
· Letter of Interest
· Market Research Analyst
· Marketing Assistant (college student)
· Media Relations (college graduate)
N - R
· Networking Cover Letters
· Occupational Therapist
· Office Assistant (part-time)
· Part-Time Job
· Physical Therapist
· Programmer Analyst
· Prospecting Letter
· Recruiting Manager
· Referred by a Contact
· Request a Meeting
· Research Technician
· Retail Management
S - Z
· Salary History
· Salary Range
· Salary Requirements
· Sales Associate (summer)
It’s a good time to be a job seeker: U.S. job growth is strong, unemployment is on a steady decline, and openings are at an all-time high.
That doesn’t make the search any less daunting. Differentiating yourself from every other job seeker on the market is no small feat, and the monotony of filling out online applications can make the task downright exhausting. That’s where a killer cover letter comes in.
Done right, a great cover letter is like a secret weapon for catching a hiring manager’s attention. Next to your resume, it’s one of the most important, underutilized tools at your disposal.
Here are some cover letter writing tips, and a free, downloadable template, to make yours stand out.
Every cover letter you write should be tailored to the job you’re applying for — just like your resume. Study the job posting carefully, and make a quick list of any essential qualifications.
“Job seekers really struggle with what to say on a cover letter,” says Jessica Holbrook Hernandez, President and CEO of Great Resumes Fast. “Taking a second to think about why you’re applying, and why you’re a good fit for the company, makes the process a lot easier.”
If you’re adding a cover letter to an online application, use a business letter format with a header and contact information. If you’re sending an email, it’s OK to leave out the header, but be sure to provide a phone number (and an attached resume, of course). Make sure you’re clear about the position you’re applying for.
Avoid nameless salutations — it might take a little Google research, and some LinkedIn outreach, but finding the actual name of the position’s hiring manager will score you major brownie points. “Do not start a cover letter with, ‘to whom it may concern,’” Holbrook Hernandez says. “It concerns no one.”
2. Tell a Story
To grab a recruiter’s attention, a good narrative—with a killer opening line—is everything.
“The cover letter is a story,” says Satjot Sawhney, a resume and career strategist with Loft Resumes. “What is the most interesting thing you’re doing that’s relevant to this job?” Use that to guide your letter.
Ideally, the story that drives your resume will focus on a need at the company you’re applying for. If you’re a PR professional, maybe you have a list of clients in an industry the team wants to break into. If you’re in marketing, a successful promotional campaign might be the ticket in. “A hiring manager wants to see results-driven accomplishments with a past employer,” says Holbrook Hernandez. “If you’ve done it before, you can deliver it again.”
If you have a career gap or are switching industries, address it upfront. “If there’s anything unique in your career history, call that out in the beginning,” says professional resume writer Brooke Shipbaugh.
(Here’s a downloadable sample.)
3. Use Bullet Points to Show Impact
Hiring managers are usually slammed with applications, so short, quick cover letters are preferable to bloated ones, says Paul Wolfe, Senior Vice President of human resources at job site Indeed.
“Make your cover letter a brief, bright reference tool,” he says. “The easier you can make it on the recruiter the better.”
Bullet points are a good tool for pulling out numbers-driven results. Job seekers in creative fields like art and design can use bullets to break down their most successful project. Those in more traditional roles (like the one in the template), can hammer off two or three of their most impressive accomplishments.
4. Highlight Culture Fit
It’s often overlooked, but a major function of the cover letter is to show a company how well you’d mesh with the culture.
As you research a potential employer, look for culture cues on the company website, social media, and review sites like Glassdoor. Oftentimes, employers will nod to culture in a job posting. If the ad mentions a “team environment,” it might be good to play up a recent, successful collaboration. If the company wants a “self-starter,” consider including an achievement that proves you don’t need to be micromanaged.
The tone of your letter can also play to culture. “The cover letter is a great place to show [an employer] how you fit into their world,” Shipbaugh says. “Show some personality.”
5. End with an Ask
The goal of a cover letter is to convince the person reading it to make the next move in the hiring process — with a phone call, interview, or otherwise. Ending on a question opens that door without groveling for it.
“You have to approach this with a non-beggar mentality,” Sawhney says. “Having an ‘ask’ levels the playing field.”
Related: What Your Resume Should Look Like in 2018