A good cover letter can prove that you write well, think clearly, and possess the qualities you need to succeed in the job. A poorly written or structured cover letter, on the other hand, can hold back your application.

Rehashing your CV

When candidates don’t know how to write a cover letter, they tend to just rehash their CV again. This should be avoided as the hiring manager already has a copy of your CV in front of them. Concentrate on telling them not only about your past jobs but also how you got to where you are today and why this position is the right move for you.

Consider making it a little bit personal as opposed to your CV, which should be totally professional. Your cover letter should entice the hiring manager to read your CV and to add value to your application. It is a good opportunity for the reader to see if you would be the right cultural fit for the company.

Using a Generic Template Letter

Something that occurs quite a bit is jobseekers using the same generic cover letter for every application. Writing a cover letter which is targeted is a much better way to go about things. Make sure you mention the specific job for which you are applying for in your first sentence. Consider the characteristics needed as highlighted in the job description. Match your skills, experiences and qualities to the job description.

Too Short of a Cover Letter

Submitting a cover letter that is too short can give off the impression to the hiring manager that you don’t have much interest in the position, or you lack a work ethic. A very short cover letter may mean missing an opportunity to discuss your background with employers. It may also rule you out of the running for the job without even looking at your CV.

Too Long of a Cover Letter

While you shouldn’t write too short of a cover letter that doesn’t mean going off writing an essay either. A lengthy cover letter may lead the reader to become disinterested and put your application into the “no” pile. Try not to have paragraphs too jam-packed. Keep it to 3 to 5 paragraphs with roughly six lines in each.

Putting in non-essential information

The main thing you want to get across in your cover letter is why you are the right person for the job. That means everything you include should be specific to the business and the role you’re applying for. The hiring manager doesn’t want to know about your hobbies or what books you have read in the past. You may have a brilliant CV for the role but a cover letter full of waffle may rule you out of the reckoning.


Everyone can make mistakes but there is no room for error when it comes to a cover letter. Between Grammarly and spell checker on Microsoft word, there is no excuse for having any grammatical or spelling mistakes. However, this still happens, and this causes job seekers to fall at the first hurdle. It looks sloppy and shows a lack of attention to detail. Always re-read your cover letter over and over again before sending it on.