What makes your cover letter stand out to employers?

Senior Technical Recruiter, Indeed
J. Palmer

I’m an experienced recruiter and I’ve been a hiring manager, too. I’ve seen the same mistakes again and again throughout my career. But if you take a little extra time to avoid these common problems, your cover letter should really stand out!

Remember these four questions to help you write a successful cover letter and get hired:

  • Why do you want to work for the company? What interests you about them?
    • Talk about how your personality and skills align with what they do
  • Why are you a good fit for this company and the job?
    • Write about how your past work, life experiences and skills meet the important requirements of the job
  • How are you personalizing this cover letter sample?
    • Tailor your cover letter to the job you’re applying for
    • Address the cover letter to whoever will be reading it. If you don’t know who will be reading it, you can address it as “To the Hiring Committee” or “To the Hiring Manager”
  • Have you proofread your cover letter?
    • Make sure to check for correct spelling and grammar before sending out your cover letter!

[Your Name]
September 17, 2019

  • [Phone Number]
  • [e-mail]

Dear Hiring Manager,

As a recent graduate with a doctorate in Marine Biology I am thrilled to be applying for the open position of Scientist with Northwest Tech. For the past three years I have been working as a Research Assistant for my alma mater, Midwest University. As I begin my career as a Scientist I am excited for the opportunity to join your first-class research institute.

As a Research Assistant I was tasked with developing efficient ways to collect and analyze data. I also worked to coordinate the schedules of research subjects and lab procedures, and wrote reports compiling findings. In my spare time I wrote a compelling paper summarizing a discovery I made regarding the lifecycle of plankton in the Pacific Ocean which was published in a top industry journal.

I have proven myself to be a creative analytical thinker and innovator. I am meticulous and detail oriented and always brainstorming ways to improve processes or develop new ones all together. My outside the box thinking skills and inquisitive mindset have always been commended by my professors and supervisors.

In closing, I am eager for the possibility to join such a highly-respected research institution and I'm confident that my fresh perspective and passion for marine science make me an excellent candidate for this position. I thank you for your consideration and hope to hear from you soon regarding an interview.


How to write a scientist cover letter?

  • Include your full name and contact information at the top of your cover letter
  • Start the cover letter by respectfully addressing the recipient by name
  • Mention where you found the job posting and your interest in the opportunity
  • Use the first paragraph to explain why you would be a great hire as the scientist
  • Briefly discuss your experiences, qualifications and accomplishments related to this opportunity
  • Thank the reader and express interest in discussing the role in more detail
  • End the cover letter with a professional sign-off and your full name
  • Your cover letter should be one-page or or less in length