Cover Letters

What Is a Cover Page?

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A cover page, also often called a cover letter, is one of the first things a hiring manager reads when reviewing your application. To make a positive first impression, your cover page should be easy to read and include information about why an employer should hire you. Read this article to learn the basics of cover pages, what details and information should be included and how to format a cover page.

What is a cover page?

A cover page is a one-page letter you send to employers in addition to your resume and any other application materials they ask for. You can describe your skills, experience, education and achievements that make you a good fit for the role. Be sure to include the reason why you applied for the position. A cover page can serve as a way to explain your interest in the role since a resume has limited space. Consider submitting a personalized cover page with each application you send.

What to include in a cover page

Here are the main items you should include in a cover page: 

Heading

At the top of your cover page, add a formal business header.

Example of a business header:

  • Your name, address, phone number and email address
  • The date
  • The recipient’s name, company and address

If you’re unsure of the name of the person you need to send your cover page to, you can use the company name instead.

Salutation

After your header, add a salutation that addresses the recipient. A professional salutation will have the recipient’s title and last name. For example, ‘Dear Mr. Wise.’ Reread the job description to see if there’s a specific person you should address, or you can contact the company. Use ‘Dear Hiring Manager,’ or ‘Dear Hiring Committee’ if you don’t know who to address. 

Details about the job and company

In your first paragraph, explain what job you’re applying for and how you found it. Specify which website you found the job advertisement on so hiring managers know which recruitment efforts are working. 

If someone referred you, include their name so the hiring manager can contact that person for more details about you. Including a name can also get the employer’s attention, making it more likely that they’ll invite you in for an interview. 

Skills and experience

Use your second paragraph to describe why you’re the right person for the job. Go into detail about any certain skills you have that the employer may find useful. If possible, relate your skills to some in the job description. Your cover page is a good place to write about how you use your skills in the workplace, so give specific examples. 

If you have any experience that relates to the job, you can also write about that in the second paragraph. Try to incorporate how you used the skills you mentioned to excel in the role. 

Additional items

If education, certifications or licensure are important for the job, list them in the next paragraph. 

Examples of additional information you might want to include:

  • Degree title
  • Year awarded
  • Awarding body
  • License number
  • Expiration date

You can also add any achievements or accomplishments, such as winning an award. 

Interest in the role

In the next paragraph, tell the employer why you’re interested in the role. Look at the company’s website and the job description, then pick one or two things that make you excited about the job or business. This shows the employer that you did your research and truly want to work for the company. 

Closing

The final paragraph of your cover page should have a call to action for the hiring manager to follow up with you. State that you’re looking forward to learning about the next steps in the interview process, and that they can contact you if they have any questions about your resume and qualifications. You can also thank them for taking the time to read your cover page and resume. 

After that, include a professional closing, like ‘Sincerely,’ ‘Best’ or ‘Regards.’

Name and signature

Add a space after your closing to add your signature. If you’re sending your cover page by email, you can add an electronic signature or leave the space out. Below your signature, print your name. 

Cover page tips

Here are some tips to consider when writing your cover page:

  • Keep it short. Cover pages should be less than a page long. This ensures the employer can read it all the way through instead of scanning it. 
  • Only include the necessary details. To keep the hiring manager’s interest, add details that are relevant to the role. Keep it focused so it’s easy to read in a short amount of time. 
  • Use keywords if possible. Look at the job description for any keywords you might be able to add. Skills, responsibilities and qualifications are all good areas to check for words you can incorporate in your cover page. 

By following these tips, you can create a cover page that hiring managers read from beginning to end.

Cover page template

You can use this template to write your own cover page:

[Your name]
[Your address]
[Your phone number]
[Your email]

[The date]

[Recipient’s name]
[Recipient’s company]
[Recipient’s address]

Dear [Recipient’s name],

[In the first paragraph, describe the role and how you found it.]

[Use the second paragraph to describe your skills and experience.]

[The third paragraph should explain your interest in the job.]

[End your letter with a call to action.]

[Closing],
[Signature]
[Your name]

Cover page example

This is an example of a basic cover page:

Michael Chang
43 2nd Ave.
Franklin, PA
555-555-5555
michael.chang@email.com

February 4, 2020

Leandra Hussein
Pennsylvania Glass, Inc. 
673 Jacobs Ln. 
Franklin, PA

Dear Ms. Hussein,

Thank you for considering me for your open transportation coordinator position. Morgan Lee, an accounting clerk at your company, informed me of the role on Monday, and I was excited to apply. 

In my three years as a transportation coordinator, I have developed excellent communication, time-management and organization skills. At my current job as a transportation coordinator with Diaz and Associates, I created a new fleet schedule and matrix that increased the number of local deliveries by four per day. I was also awarded Employee of the Month in November 2019.

After researching your company, I believe I would be a perfect fit for the role. I value teamwork and working hard to help others in achieving a common goal.

I would enjoy the opportunity to speak with you more about the job and your company. I have attached my resume for you to review, and I would be happy to answer any questions you have about my qualifications. Thank you for your time and consideration. 

Regards, 

Michael Chang