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How To Write a Cover Letter for a CV (With Examples)

Alison Doyle is one of the nation’s foremost career experts.

cover letter examples for cv

Tips for Writing a Cover Letter for a CV

Proofread before sending, cover letter template, cover letter sample, sending an email cover letter, more cover letter examples.

When you apply for a job with a  curriculum vitae  (CV), it's important to include a cover letter, also known as a covering letter. This letter allows you to make a favorable first impression, using narrative in your own tone of voice to catch the reader’s attention and encourage them to seriously review your attached CV.

Like a resume, a CV summarizes your skills and experience. The  difference between a CV and a resume  is length, the focus on credentials, and what the documents are used for. Typically, a CV is required to apply for roles in academia, scientific research, and medical fields. 

While your CV provides a detailed—and often lengthy—look at your experience and credentials, the cover letter is an opportunity to call out your most important qualifications and make a compelling case for your candidacy for the role at hand. Here's what you need to know to write a successful curriculum vitae cover letter. 

Tailor the Letter to Fit the Organization

The CV cover letter should be  tailored to respond to the unique and specific requirements  requested by each organization you are approaching. 

Do not use the same cover letter for every job you apply to, even though it may seem like a timesaver. 

Each letter needs to provide detailed information about why are you are qualified for the specific job in question, and it should outline the reasons for your interest in the company or organization. Being specific is advantageous. Even if you're applying for two similar roles in two different hospitals, the two hospitals may serve different populations or require slightly different responsibilities for people in the role. Your letters to each hospital should reflect that. 

Use your cover letter to identify the skills or experiences most specific to the job, rather than copying directly the information in your CV.

What to Include

As a candidate, it's tempting to feel like the cover letter is unnecessary, since it is likely that all the pertinent information is included in your CV. Still, as you can see, the cover letter is a helpful tool in your application. Here's what to keep in mind as you write a cover letter. 

Format Matters

The content of your cover letter should be brief and structured. Aim for 3-5 paragraphs in your letter.  Start with a salutation. Your letter should address the relevant contact, whose name often appears in the job advertisement. Avoid “Sir” or “Madam” if possible.

If the letter recipient's name isn't provided, try these  tips to determine the correct contact person . 

Start With an Introduction

Typically, the first paragraph will be an introduction—if you are applying to a job ad, mention it here. Mention the job title, any reference number, and where and when you saw it. The first paragraph is also where you should mention if someone referred you to the position. 

The Body of the Cover Letter

The body of the letter—the second and third paragraphs—should highlight your relevant skills and experience. Highlight your  transferable skills , achievements, and versatility. Explain what you can contribute and what makes you stand out from your competition. Include mention of your current or last job, qualifications, and professional and academic training, tailoring your information to make it as relevant as possible to the organization or job applied for.

In the body of the cover letter, you can mention personality traits relevant to the role at hand. You can also use this space to call out why you're interested in this specific role, at this specific company. Potential employers and hiring managers will appreciate it if you can show you've read the job ad and researched the company. 

Avoid lengthy repetition of information covered in your CV. Unlike a CV, it is acceptable to write a cover letter in the first person.

Conclude the letter by succinctly summarizing why an employer may want to meet and employ you. Include a polite expression of interest in further dialogue with the recruiter. Do mention that you would like the opportunity to discuss your suitability further in a personal interview and that you await a response in due course.

Follow Instructions 

In some cases, an advertisement will indicate that a more substantial letter is required. 

Always follow specific instructions and include any information if it is specifically requested. For instance, some employers may ask you to include your current salary or your desired salary range. 

Make Sure the Letter Reads Well 

Ensure that your CV cover letter flows freely. You do not need to precisely match every point on the job description. The reader should be left with an overall impression that you are a potentially valuable addition to the workforce.

The letter should be readable and engaging. 

Negative information of any sort should be avoided in your cover letter, as well as on your CV.

You'll want to be sure your letter is free from grammar or spelling errors. It should also be clearly presented—that means using standard formatting, and common  readable fonts  (such as Times New Roman or Verdana) in an appropriate size. 

This is a cover letter example. Download the cover letter template (compatible with Google Docs and Word Online) or see below for more examples.

Depending on the employer's submission requirements, cover letters can be submitted online with your CV, uploaded online, or mailed. Be sure to follow the application instructions and follow the directions on how to apply. Consider this template for how to structure your letter: 

Belinda Applicant 123 Main Street Anytown, CA 12345 555-555-5555 belinda.applicant@gmail.com

October 25, 2021

Clark Lee, PhD Biology Department Chair Northwestern University 123 Business Rd. Business City, NY 54321

Dear Dr, Lee:

I am writing to apply for the position of assistant professor in the Biology department, as described in the Northern University website. The opportunity to teach biology appeals to me, and I believe I can be an asset to the department due to my experience as a field biologist, as well as my work as an adjunct professor at Southern State University. In accordance with your job description, I have the following skills:

• Experience lecturing to large audiences

• Experience with learning management systems and course design

• Ability to assist with labs for other professors

• Experience with grant writing and research

I have enclosed my curriculum vitae so you may examine my work and research experience, the papers I’ve published, and my educational background.

I can be reached anytime by email at Belinda.applicant@gmail.com or my cell phone, 555-555-5555. Thank you so much for your time and consideration. I look forward to speaking with you about this position.

Signature (hard copy letter)

Belinda Applicant

When you are sending your cover letter by email, list your contact information in your signature rather than at the top of the letter. List your name and the job title in the subject line of the message. 

Here are more examples of cover letters that you can use as a starting point for your own correspondence.

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Type writer with "Dear Madam" written on it

Three excellent cover letter examples

Cover letters are the first chance you have to impress an employer – they’re not just a protective jacket for your CV. Here’s our guide on what to include and how to format them

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The first thing a potential employer sees in your job application is the cover letter. This doesn’t just support your CV – it’s an opportunity for you to stand out from the crowd and persuade the recruiter to put you through to the next round.

Be wary of spending hours on perfecting your CV at the expense of your cover letter. If you need some inspiration on what to include and what format to use, here are our helpful guides – just remember not to copy them as exact templates.

1. Standard, conservative style

This is ideal for sectors such as business, law, accountancy and retail. For more creative sectors, a letter like this might be less appealing, and could work against you.

Dear Mr Black, Please find enclosed my CV in application for the post advertised in the Guardian on 30 November. The nature of my degree course has prepared me for this position. It involved a great deal of independent research, requiring initiative, self-motivation and a wide range of skills. For one course, [insert course], an understanding of the [insert sector] industry was essential. I found this subject very stimulating. I am a fast and accurate writer, with a keen eye for detail and I should be very grateful for the opportunity to progress to market reporting. I am able to take on the responsibility of this position immediately, and have the enthusiasm and determination to ensure that I make a success of it. Thank you for taking the time to consider this application and I look forward to hearing from you in the near future. Yours sincerely

2. Standard speculative letter

This may vary according to the nature of the organisation and the industry you’re applying to.

Dear Mr Brown, I am writing to enquire if you have any vacancies in your company. I enclose my CV for your information. As you can see, I have had extensive vacation work experience in office environments, the retail sector and service industries, giving me varied skills and the ability to work with many different types of people. I believe I could fit easily into your team. I am a conscientious person who works hard and pays attention to detail. I’m flexible, quick to pick up new skills and eager to learn from others. I also have lots of ideas and enthusiasm. I’m keen to work for a company with a great reputation and high profile like [insert company name]. I have excellent references and would be delighted to discuss any possible vacancy with you at your convenience. In case you do not have any suitable openings at the moment, I would be grateful if you would keep my CV on file for any future possibilities. Yours sincerely

3. Letter for creative jobs

We’ve used the example of a copywriter but you can adapt it for your profession. The aim of a creative letter is to be original and show you have imagination, but understand what the job entails. Balance is essential: don’t be too wacky, or it will turn off the reader.

Dear Ms Green, · Confused by commas? · Puzzled by parenthesis? · Stumped by spelling? · Perturbed by punctuation? · Annoyed at the apostrophe? (And alliteration?) Well, you’re not alone. It seems that fewer and fewer people can write. Unfortunately, there are still a lot of people who can read. So they’ll spot a gaffe from a mile off. And that means it’s a false economy, unless you’re 100% sure of yourself, to write your own materials. (Or to let clients do it for themselves.) To have materials properly copywritten is, when one considers the whole process of publishing materials and the impact that the client wishes to make, a minor expense. Sloppiness loses clients, loses customers. There is an answer. Me. Firm quotes are free. You can see some of what I do on my multilingual website at [insert web address]. If you’d like, I can get some samples out to you within 24 hours. And, if you use me, you’ll have some sort of guarantee that you can sleep soundly as those tens of thousands of copies are rolling off the presses. Luck shouldn’t come into it! With kindest regards

Other helpful resources

How to write a perfect CV and cover letter

Applying for jobs without experience? How to build and sell your skills

Five steps to the perfect graduate CV

School-leavers and graduates: how to write your first CV

How to write a personal statement for your CV

CV templates to fit every stage of your career

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Land the job with cover letter templates

Show hiring managers why you're the perfect job candidate with professional, customizable cover letter templates. find the perfect cover letter template for any industry or career path..

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Download free cover letter templates

Stand out from other job applicants with free, professional cover letter templates. Cover letters are a perfect complement to your resume and provide an effective opportunity to show your personality and enthusiasm for a position. Focus on writing a compelling cover letter and let a professionally designed template do the rest.

These free cover letter templates are perfect for any stage of your career, whether you're looking to land an internship or your dream job. If you're applying for a corporate position, you may want to opt for a simple cover letter template. There are a variety of other cover letter designs available, from basic cover letter templates to creative cover letter templates.

Each of these cover letter templates is customizable in Word , so you can add your own text, change design elements, and more. Print out your cover letter or download it for free to use for online job applications. Once you've customized the perfect cover letter, explore resume templates that will match your cover letter design, or download free business cards for your next networking event.


Cover Letter Examples

Free Professional Cover Letter Example and Writing Tips

Margaret Buj

Career expert

CV template Professional

A cover letter that’s well  written and tailored for the position  you want to get is an essential part of any job application. A cover letter is expected by at least  10% of all recruiters  in addition to a  properly prepared resume . Make sure yours stands out perfectly for the role you’re seeking by using our professional examples below along with our cover letter builder.

What Should I Include in My Cover Letter?

An effective cover letter will need the following four key elements shown below

1. A formal greeting

Your first contact with the employer should be a formal one. You should address them as Mr/Mrs/Ms. for this initial interaction and state their name. If possible, avoid generic openers like “Dear Sir/Madam” or “to whom it may concern”.

2. A persuasive introduction

Use the first paragraph to introduce yourself as a candidate and to give a great first impression. Use this space to give quick reasons why you applied and would be the right choice for the precise job on offer.

3. Compelling paragraphs

This next part of the letter can be used to build a convincing argument as to why you’d be the right pick for the company. Use numerical evidence to support your case and make your achievements eye-grabbing.

4. Strong Final Impression

Finally, start moving the conversation towards the next stage of the job selection process. Encourage the recruiter to read your resume for further details and explain that you’re keen to meet in person as well as how you can be contacted.

[Hiring Manager’s name]

[Company name]

[Company address]

Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms. [Hiring Manager Name]

I am contacting you to communicate my interest in the Administrative Assistant role being advertised by [company]. This role really caught my attention as I have a strong educational background and extensive experience in the office administration of medium-sized businesses. I think this knowledge and expertise could be highly valuable to [company].

During my 6 year career, I have assisted with a wide range of office administrative tasks using Microsoft Office and LibreOffice software. I have been responsible for maintaining and managing sensitive data at each and every step of the meeting organization from planning to the recording of minutes, as well as drafting critical communications.

In my current position, I was also tasked with optimizing the efficiency of our office supply buying, the results of which saved the company over $1,800 per quarter. I also enhanced my written skills greatly by assisting with the drafting and proofing of important executive correspondences.

I have enclosed my resume with this letter to provide further information about my career history so far. I hope that my credentials represent a good match for this role.

I’m very keen to learn more about the position and would be eager to organize a meeting to discuss it in more detail. In the meantime, I’d like to thank you for your consideration and to invite you to contact me at any time regarding the opportunity.

I can be reached every evening from 4 pm-8.30 pm via home phone or at any time with my email address listed below.

Address Phone number Email address

Create a compelling cover letter to get the attention of a recruiter. We’ll show you in the points below how it’s done and what to highlight when using our cover letter builder.

Essential Points to Highlight

What should or shouldn’t be included in an effective document and what should a cover letter say? Let us briefly explain…

There’s more than one way to  format and prepare a letter . Depending on the type of job you’re targeting and your level of experience you have several options to choose from.

Simple Cover Letter

Our example of a simple cover letter shows you how to start preparing a document that can be used if you have  little-to-no professional experience  but that also allows you to highlight your most employable features. It is an easy cover letter to create, which is useful when you are just starting your career.

February 16th 2020

Dear Adrian,

I am writing to apply for the Customs Broker position at Geoplex Inc as posted on LinkedIn.com. I am a qualified and fully licensed broker, with over 4 years of experience and exemplary history of managing drilling machinery imports.

I was particularly interested in the position with Geoplex, as I share in the company values of growth and innovation. Working with Benson LLC, my current organization, I’ve overseen a 12% cut in costs, as well as ensuring the standards of compliance expected by the US CBP.

Furthermore, I’ve developed a reputation for coming up with exceptional solutions to problems. This has been an especially vital skill in my current role, especially when resolving any factors arising with clearance and deliveries.

I am eager to continue my upward trajectory in a new position and would relish the opportunity to make that happen with Geoplex Inc. Please find enclosed my resume, which provides additional detail on my skills and experience as well as my complete contact information.

Please feel free to reach out to me at your leisure via my personal number or email address. I look forward to speaking to you further regarding the position.

Connie Barnes

What Makes This a Strong Covering Letter?

Generally speaking, a simple cover letter allows you to convey a lot of information fast with little excess detail. It fits in all the required information that will help give you an edge over the competition, in a concise and focused manner.

As we can see in the adjacent cover letter example, the applicant focuses on a polite greeting, conveys all the contact details necessary, and uses the first paragraph to quickly outline their interest in the job and why they’d be suitable.

This allows you as the candidate to show that you have a genuine enthusiasm for applying, which will in turn interest the employer. You can then dedicate the rest of the initial opening to offering some tidbits of information that will further motivate the recruiter to keep reading.

Learn the basics about  writing addresses on cover letters  so you can plan what information to include

In the next part of the document, our writer has added some key examples as to how they made the difference in their last job. They’ve demonstrated a little about the essential tasks they did and focused on the results they achieved in doing so.

To finish things off, they have reiterated their enthusiasm for the role available and have gradually started to draw the conversation towards the possibility of an interview. It also creates some interest in the resume (which will be a more detailed explanation of your professional experience).

As you can see, each part of the document takes the reader on a short journey from the reason for applying, to why you’d be the best candidate for the job, to finally angling towards the next steps of the process. By doing this while focusing on the job description this will provide the recruiter with exactly what they’ll need to see to pick you for an interview.

Professional Cover Letter

In our example of a professional cover letter, you’ll see how to start writing and organizing a document that can help take you to the next level of your career. If you’ve already got a few years of experience under your belt, learn how to use it to your advantage.

Dear Patricia,

I wanted to make contact with you to register my interest in the Key Account Manager position with Rhino insurance that is advertised on LinkedIn. During my 8 years of working in insurance, Rhino is a company I’ve always admired and I think I could offer you the skills you’re looking for.

My goal is and always has been to get the maximum from my staff and create excellent relationships with high profile clients. That’s why over the last 4 years of working with Yannick Mutual I’ve overseen a 93% retention rate and helped to raise revenue by as much as 14%.

Great customer management is a skill that I know Rhino values highly and it is something I pride myself on also. Your 4.8-star customer satisfaction rating stands as a testament to your ability to respond properly to your client’s needs and I would love to bring my experience to help you achieve even better results.

I would be more than happy to talk in more depth on how I can help Rhino continue in its successes. Please contact me on 207-440-4475 if you would be interested in meeting for an interview.

Thank you for taking my application into consideration and I hope we can discuss the opportunity in more depth soon.

Raquel Galaz

What Makes This an Effective Cover Letter?

Professional cover letters will need to be more detailed than some other types like an  entry-level  or  simple cover letter .  However, conciseness is still key.

As we can see in this adjacent example the writer has started off as normal by detailing their contact information and  formally greeting the recruiter . They then go on to make a short introduction of themself and start making a strong case for why they would be the right choice.

In the next section, they move onto explaining a little about the way they manage in their current job and  illustrating where they brought results  with specific instances as evidence. As a seasoned professional you’ll be expected to provide plenty of examples of how you made a difference in previous jobs and what you achieved.

Learn the basics about writing addresses on cover letters so you can plan what information to include.

To finish things off, the candidate added important elements of a good conclusion:

  • Stating a desire to meet
  • Contact information
  • Thank you for the employer’s consideration

This detailed document covers a lot in just a few paragraphs, however, it strikes the right  balance between essential information and brevity . It also functions well as it is specifically tailored to the type of profile that the recruiter is looking for.

Entry-Level Cover Letter

When you’re starting out in your career or you’ve made a  major change of industry  you’re going to need an effective entry-level cover letter. Use our example to get your professional journey off on the right foot.

I am writing to express my interest in the Structural Engineer position with Rode Engineering advertised on Glassdoor.com. Having recently completed my B.S. in Engineering from MIT in May 20XX, I would love to start my career with Rode and feel I would be a perfect fit for the role being offered.

You stated in your notice that you are looking for a candidate with superb communication skills, excellent focus, and who is a good team player. This is precisely what I would be able to bring to the position. During my time at MIT, I was an active member of the volleyball team, where interdependency, strategy, and quick decision-making were invaluable skills for success.

Additionally, over 2 summers, I interned with Humbert Energy for 6 months, working within their infrastructure team. This gave me a working knowledge of everyday engineering tasks as well as many more abilities such as spotting warn parts, serious flaws in a design, and necessary structural repairs.

As you can see, my hands-on experience, my extracurricular activities, and my Engineering B.S. make me a great fit for the Structural Engineer role at Rode. I would be excited to discuss the position more in person.

Thank you very much for considering my application. Please feel free to contact me either on my phone number 412-721-6679 or my personal email to talk about the position at length. I look forward to hearing from you.

Dan Gillard

What Makes This a Convincing Covering Letter?

Like all good covering letters, this example starts off by making a  soft introduction  and giving a little detail as to why the candidate could be a good fit for the role. However, unlike others, it immediately addresses the elephant in the room, namely the lack of professional experience.

Not only does it state the candidate’s enthusiasm for seeking the role but it also makes it clear that they are newly qualified. However, it still plays to the writer’s strengths by  stating the qualification upfront  which allows the recruiter to see that the candidate is fully trained for the job.

Your qualifications are going to be your biggest selling point in this type of letter. If you don’t have any, instead focus on relevant examples of hands-on work experience.

In the main body of this example letter, we can see that the applicant has focused entirely on addressing the job requirements point-by-point. They’ve brought specific examples of where their  college education and time studying was put to good use  and how this could apply to the sort of profile the recruiter is looking for.

This involves a mix of  hard skills and soft skills , but it perfectly helps to make up for any lack of real-world professional experience. However, to make their case even stronger, they have been able to include details of an internship, which could help make the difference against the competition.

To finish everything off the writer has given a short prompt to  reiterate why they would fit the desired profile well , in a quick conclusion. All that then needs to be added is a short paragraph giving the recruiter a call to action and hopefully instigate the next steps in the process.

Creative Cover Letter

Creative cover letters stray a little from the normal rules of job applications. Find out how to effectively  create a document for a more artistic job that gets results  and demonstrates your creativity.

Dear David,

Fudge Digital is hiring and I am just the person you need. My name is Susan Taylor and I’m a seasoned and successful Digital Marketing Manager with more than 5 years of online marketing experience. Fudge is a business with a reputation for bringing together creativity and progress. Together, I think we’d make the perfect team.

I live and breathe life as a digital creative and in the last 5 years, it’s been my honor to be able to call myself a professional in this field. I make it my mission to create attractive and effective marketing assets that look great and sell better. In the last quarter, the digital assets my team and I brought to life have smashed their targets by over 30%.

My biggest guiding forces are communication and cooperation and I know that Fudge also appreciates these skills. I’ve been following your blog for a couple of years now and have always been impressed by the values of teamwork and inspiration that are woven into everything you do.

I was also totally blown away by your Award-winning video campaign. Hopefully, we’ll be able to work together to see that you retain the title next year.

Thank you for taking the time to read through my application. I am contactable by email every day or by landline Monday-to-Friday from 6 pm onwards. I hope we can meet soon to discuss how we can help Fudge reach even greater heights.

Yours truly,

Susan Taylor

What Makes This a Powerful Cover Letter?

In most cases, creative cover letters involve  even more individuality than most  and rely on standing out. Nevertheless, they still follow normal letter-writing conventions.

As you can see in our professional example, the writer still uses  standard formality and letter structure . However, once they launch into their opening salvo they do so with a much more imaginative approach.

The letter opening still introduces the candidate and sells them a little as the perfect fit for the job. As you would normally expect, it also gives some detail about the  motivations of the applicant .

Don’t get too experimental with your cover letter. It is still a formal part of your job application and whilst you can take some risks it still has to focus on the task at hand.

The middle sections of this letter focus on building a complete picture of the candidate. It goes into detail whilst also  adding more creative embellishments  than you wouldn’t normally see in a  simple  or  professional cover letter .

Our candidate, in this case,  chooses to use specific examples  that illustrate the success their work has brought in. In this case, exceeding commercial targets by double-digit percentages.

This writer also goes a step beyond and gives a lot more information about  how the company itself got their attention  and how both parties’ goals align. Again, they cite a specific example to strengthen their hand and to show they have done their research on the business.

The author of the letter then finishes off with a quick thank you for consideration and gives the recruiter some details on how to make contact. This leaves the reader with a  positive final impression  as well as the precise sort of information they need to move the process forward.

As we can see, creative documents are worded very differently to more conventional documents. However, even in these cases, it’s still essential to  give as much evidence as possible  on your working record, using numerical data where possible.

Short Cover Letter

It isn’t always necessary to write a cover letter that fills an entire page. If you can manage to explain why you’re the best candidate for the position, your  cover letter’s length  does not need to be that long. Use the top 1 to 2 reasons you should be hired, and keep what you write relevant to the vacancy.

Dear Mr. James,

I’ve loved teaching and working with children and adolescents since I was a summer camp counselor in my junior year of high school.

I have over eight years of teaching experience at the middle school level, working with children that cover a wide range of learning skills. The state test scores of my students have collectively finished in the 95th percentile of all test takers in each of the past four years. Considering all of these factors, I believe I am the ideal candidate for the 7th and 8th-grade math teacher position at Woodlawn Middle School.

Please feel free to contact me at any time, I can be reached at 555-732-4198 or by email at [email protected]

Sincerely, Frederik Gorman

You might not think less is more when you are applying for a job vacancy. However, in this case, a short cover letter can be just as convincing as a long one. There are cover letters that last an entire page and list  irrelevant information .

The purpose of a short cover letter is to get straight to the point. As we can see in the above short cover letter example, the applicant makes it clear right away that they are excited about the chance to fill the position.

Don’t worry so much about trying to flatter the employer. Get into what makes you the perfect candidate right at the beginning, and mention you would like a response soon.

The body of the letter and the ending of the letter achieve several things:

  • Addresses a specific accomplishment
  • Makes the candidate’s skills and experience clear
  • Enthusiasm for the job and an interview

Normal cover letters will go into further detail regarding the experience and skills the candidate possesses, however, this type of letter briefly yet effectively communicates the same information.

Advantages of Cover Letter Examples

As well as offering guidance and some inspiration, cover letter examples can be useful tools in helping you learn how to  highlight the most important information  that employers will need to know about. When  creating your cover letter , ResumeCoach’s examples can help with the following points:

Learn the length you should use and the sections that you will need to include.

2. Keywords

Personalize your cover letter and find the keywords that work for your sector.

3. Choice of language

Get the level of formality right and make the text accessible for any recruiter.

4. Adaptability and speed

Complete and adapt your cover letter and resume for any job with our editor.

Cover Letter Samples

Discover our perfect cover letter examples and find out the best tips and advice to write an outstanding cover letter for your resume.

  • Administrative Assistant
  • Engineering
  • Receptionist
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  • Flight Attendant
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  • Software Engineer
  • Customer Service
  • Sales Associate
  • Data Entry Clerk
  • Property Manager
  • Esthetician
  • Office Manager
  • Software Developer
  • Event Coordinator
  • Office Assistant
  • Elementary Teacher
  • Operations Manager
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  • Bank Teller
  • Personal Assistant
  • Phlebotomist
  • Mechanical Engineer
  • Pharmacy Technician

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How to Write a Cover Letter in 2023 + Examples

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After weeks of heavy job search, you’re almost there!

You’ve perfected your resume. 

You’ve short-listed the coolest jobs you want to apply for.

You’ve even had a friend train you for every single interview question out there.

But then, before you can send your application and call it a day, you remember that the job ad requires a cover letter.

Now you’re stuck wondering how to write a cover letter ...

Don’t panic! We’ve got you covered. Writing a cover letter is a lot simpler than you might think. 

In this guide, we’re going to teach you how to write a cover letter that gets you the job you deserve.

  • What’s a cover letter & why it’s important for your job search
  • How to write a convincing cover letter that gets you the job (step-by-step!)
  • How to perfect your cover letter with the Novoresume free checklist
  • What excellent cover letter examples look like

New to cover letter writing? Give our resumes 101 video a watch before diving into the article!

So, let’s get started with the basics!

What is a Cover Letter? (and Why It’s Important)

A cover letter is a one-page document that you submit as part of your job application (alongside your CV or Resume). 

Its purpose is to introduce you and briefly summarize your professional background. On average, your cover letter should be from 250 to 400 words long .

A good cover letter can spark the HR manager’s interest and get them to read your resume. 

A bad cover letter, on the other hand, might mean that your application is going directly to the paper shredder. So, to make sure this doesn’t happen, it’s essential to know how to write a convincing cover letter.

How does a good cover letter look, you might ask. Well, here’s an example:

how to write cover letter

Keep in mind, though, that a cover letter is a supplement to your resume, not a replacement. Meaning, you don’t just repeat whatever is mentioned in your resume.

If you’re writing a cover letter for the first time, writing all this might seem pretty tough. After all, you’re probably not a professional writer.

The thing is, though, you don’t need to be creative, or even any good at writing. All you have to do is follow a tried-and-tested format:

  • Header - Input contact information
  • Greeting the hiring manager
  • Opening paragraph - Grab the reader’s attention with 2-3 of your top achievements
  • Second paragraph - Explain why you’re the perfect candidate for the job
  • Third paragraph - Explain why you’re a good match for the company
  • Formal closing

Or, here’s what this looks like in practice:

structure of a cover letter

How to Write the Perfect Cover Letter (And Get Hired!)

Now that we’ve got the basics out of the way, we’re going to guide you through the process of writing a cover letter step by step. 

Step #1 - Pick the Right Cover Letter Template

A good cover letter is all about leaving the right first impression.

So, what’s a better way to leave a good impression than a well-formatted, visual template?

cover letter templates

You can simply pick one of our hand-picked cover letter templates , and you’ll be all set in a jiffy!

As a bonus, our AI will even give you suggestions on how to improve your cover letter on the go.

Step #2 - Start the Cover Letter with a Header

As with a resume, it’s important to start your cover letter with a Contact Information section:

contact information on a cover letter

Here, you want to include all essential information, including:

  • Phone Number
  • Name of the hiring manager / their professional title
  • Name of the company you’re applying to

In certain cases, you might also consider adding:

  • Social Media Profiles - Any type of profile that’s relevant to your field. Social Profiles on websites like LinkedIn, GitHub (for developers), Medium (for writers), etc.
  • Personal Website - If you have a personal website that somehow adds value to your application, you can mention it. Let’s say you’re a professional writer. In that case, you’d want to link to your blog.

And here’s what you shouldn’t mention in your header:

  • Your Full Address 
  • Unprofessional Email - Make sure your email is presentable. It’s pretty hard for a hiring manager to take you seriously if your email address is “[email protected].” Whenever applying for jobs, stick to the “[first name] + [last name] @ email provider.com” format.

matching resume and cover letter

Step #3 - Greet the Hiring Manager

Once you’ve properly listed your contact information, you need to start writing the cover letter contents.

The first thing to do here is to address the cover letter to the hiring manager .

That’s right, the hiring manager! Not the overly popular “Dear Sir or Madam.” You want to show your future boss that you did your research and are really passionate about working with their team.

No one wants to hire a job seeker who just spams 20+ companies and hopes to get hired in any of them.

So, how do you find out who’s the hiring manager? There are several ways to do this. 

The simplest option is to look up the head of the relevant department on LinkedIn. Let’s say you’re applying for the position of a Communication Specialist at Novoresume. The hiring manager is probably Head of Communications or Chief Communications Office.

So, you do a quick lookup on LinkedIn:

linkedin search cco

And voila! You have your hiring manager.

Or let’s say you’re applying for the position of a server. In that case, you’d be looking for the “restaurant manager.”

If this doesn’t work, you can also check out the “Team” page on the company website; there’s a good chance you’ll at least find the right person there.

Here are several other greetings you could use:

  • Dear [Department] Hiring Manager
  • Dear Hiring Manager
  • To whom it may concern
  • Dear [Department] Team

Step #4 - Write an Attention-Grabbing Introduction

First impressions matter, especially when it comes to your job search.

Recruiters get hundreds, sometimes even thousands, of applications. Chances are, they’re not going to be reading every single cover letter end-to-end.

So, it’s essential to catch their attention from the very first paragraph .

The #1 problem we see with most cover letter opening paragraphs is that they’re usually extremely generic. Most of them look something like this..

  • Hey, my name is Jonathan and I’d like to work as a Sales Manager at XYZ Inc. I’ve worked as a sales manager at MadeUpCompany Inc. for 5+ years, so I believe that I’d be a good fit for the position.

See the issue here? This opening paragraph doesn’t say pretty much anything except the fact that you’ve worked the job before.

Do you know who else has similar work experience? All the other applicants you’re competing with.

Instead, you want to start off with 2-3 of your top achievements to really grab the reader’s attention. Preferably, the achievements should be as relevant as possible to the position.

So now, let’s make our previous example shine:

My name’s Michael and I’d like to help XYZ Inc. hit and exceed their sales goals as a Sales Manager. I’ve worked with Company X, a fin-tech company, for 3+ years. As a Sales Representative, I generated an average of $30,000+ in sales per month (beating the KPIs by around 40%). I believe that my previous industry experience, as well as excellence in sales, makes me the right candidate for the job.

See the difference between the two examples? If you were the hiring manager, which sales manager would you hire, Jonathan or Michael?

Now that we’ve covered the introduction, let’s talk about the body of your cover letter. This part is split into two paragraphs: the first is for explaining why you’re the perfect person for the job, and the latter is for proving that you’re a good fit for the company.

So, let’s get started...

Step #5 - Explain why you’re the perfect person for the job

This is where you show off your professional skills and convince the HR manager that you’re a better fit for the job than all the other applicants.

But first things first - before you even write anything, you need to learn what the most important requirements for the role are. So, open up the job ad and identify which of the responsibilities are the most critical.

For the sake of the example, let’s say you’re applying for the position of a Facebook Advertiser. You scan the job ad and see that the top requirements are:

  • Experience managing a Facebook ad budget of $10,000+ / month
  • Some skills in advertising on other platforms (Google Search + Twitter)
  • Excellent copywriting skills

Now, in this section, you need to discuss how you fulfill these requirements. So, here’s how that would look for our example:

In my previous role as a Facebook Marketing Expert at XYZ Inc. I handled customer acquisition through ads, managing a monthly Facebook ad budget of $20,000+ . As the sole digital marketer at the company, I managed the ad creation & management process end-to-end. Meaning, I created the ad copy , images, picked the targeting, ran optimization trials, and so on.

Other than Facebook advertising, I’ve also delved into other online PPC channels, including:

  • Google Search

Are you a student applying for your first internship? You probably don’t have a lot of work experience to show off in this section. Learn how to write an internship cover letter here.

Step #6 - Explain why you’re a good fit for the company

Once you’ve written the last paragraph, you might be thinking - I’m a shoo-in for the job! What else do I need to write? I’ll just wrap up the cover letter and hit that sweet SEND button.

Well, no. You’re not quite there yet.

The HR manager doesn’t only look at whether you’ll be good at the job or not. They’re looking for someone that’s also a good fit for the company culture.

After all, employees that don’t fit in are bound to quit, sooner or later. This ends up costing the company a ton of money, up to 50% of the employee’s annual salary . 

Meaning, you also need to convince the HR manager that you’re really passionate about working with them.

How do you do this? Well, as a start, you want to do some research about the company. You want to know things like:

  • What’s the company’s business model?
  • What’s the company product or service? Have you used it?
  • What’s the culture like? Will someone micro-manage your work, or will you have autonomy on how you get things done?

So, get to Googling. Chances are, you’ll find all the information you need either on the company website or somewhere around the web.

Then, you need to figure out what you like about the company and turn that into text.

Let’s say, for example, you’re passionate about their product and you like the culture of innovation / independent work in the organization.

You’d write something like:

I’ve personally used the XYZ Smartphone, and I believe that it’s the most innovative tech I’ve used in years. The features such as Made-Up-Feature #1 and Made-Up-Feature #2 were real game changers for the device. 

I really admire how Company XYZ thrives for excellence for all its product lines, creating market-leading tech. As someone that thrives in a self-driven environment, I truly believe that I and Company XYZ will be a great match.

What you don’t want to do here is be super generic for the sake of having something to write. Most job seekers tend to mess this one up. Let’s take a look at a very common example we tend to see (way too often):

I’d love to work for Company XYZ because of its culture of innovation. I believe that since I’m super creative, I’d be a good fit for the company. The company values of integrity and transparency really vibe with me.

See what’s wrong here? The example doesn’t really say anything about the company. “Culture of Innovation” is something most companies claim to have. 

The same goes for “values of integrity and transparency” - the writer just googled what the values for the organization are, and said that they like them.

Any hiring manager that reads this will see through the fluff.

So, make sure to do a lot of research and come up with good reasons why you're applying.

Step #7 - Wrap up with a call to action

Finally, it’s time to finish up your cover letter and write the conclusion.

In the final paragraph, you want to:

  • Wrap up any points you couldn't in the previous paragraphs. Do you have anything left to say? Any other information that could help the hiring manager make their decision? Mention it here.
  • Thank the hiring manager for their time. It never hurts to be courteous, as long as you don’t come off as too needy.
  • Finish the cover letter with a call to action. The very last sentence in your cover letter should be a call to action. You should ask the hiring manager to take some sort of action.

And now, let’s turn this into a practical example:

So to wrap it all up, thanks for looking into my application. I hope I can help Company X make the most out of their Facebook marketing initiatives. I'd love to further discuss how my previous success at XYZ Inc. can help you achieve your facebook marketing goals.

Step #8 - Use the right formal closing

Once you’re done with the final paragraph, all you have to do is write down a formal “goodbye” and you’re good to go.

Feel free to use one of the most popular conclusions to a cover letter:

  • Best Regards,
  • Kind Regards,

And we’re finally done! Before sending off the cover letter, make sure to proofread it with software like Grammarly, or maybe even get a friend to review it for you.

Does your cover letter heading include all essential information?

  • Professional email
  • Relevant Social Media Profiles

Do you address the right person? I.e. hiring manager in the company / your future direct supervisor

Does your introductory paragraph grab the reader's attention?

  • Did you mention 2-3 of your top achievements?
  • Did you use numbers and facts to back up your experience?

Do you successfully convey that you’re the right pro for the job?

  • Did you identify the core requirements?
  • Did you successfully convey how your experiences help you fit the requirements perfectly?

Do you convince the hiring manager that you’re passionate about the company you’re applying to?

  • Did you identify the top 3 things that you like about the company?
  • Did you avoid generic reasons for explaining your interest in the company?

Did you finalize the conclusion with a call to action?

Did you use the right formal closure for the cover letter?

5+ Cover Letter Examples

Need some inspiration? Read on to learn about some of the best cover letter examples we’ve seen (for different fields).

College Student Cover Letter Example

college or student cover letter example

Middle Management Cover Letter Example

Middle Management Cover Letter

Career Change Cover Letter Example

Career Change Cover Letter

Management Cover Letter Example

Management Cover Letter Example

Senior Executive Cover Letter Example

Senior Executive Cover Letter Example

Want to discover more examples AND learn what makes them stand out? Check out our guide to cover letter examples .

Next Steps in Your Job Search - Creating a Killer Resume

Your cover letter is only as good as your resume. If either one is weak, your entire application is for naught. 

After all, a cover letter is just an introduction. Imagine going through all this effort to leave an amazing first impression, but flopping at the end because of a mediocre resume.

...But don’t you worry, we’ve got you covered on that end, too.

If you want to learn more about Resumes & CVs, we have a dedicated FREE guide for that. Check out our complete guide on how to make a resume , as well as how to write a CV - our experts will teach you everything you need to know in order to land your dream job.

Or, if you’re already an expert, just pick one of our resume templates and get started.

resume examples for cover letter

Key Takeaways

Now that we’ve walked you through all the steps of writing a cover letter, let’s summarize everything we’ve learned:

  • A cover letter is a 250 - 400 word document that convinces the hiring manager of your competence
  • A cover letter goes in your job application alongside your resume
  • Your introduction to the cover letter should grab the hiring manager’s attention and keep it all the way until the conclusion
  • There are 2 main topics you need to include in your cover letter: why you’re the perfect candidate for the job & why you’re passionate about working in the company you’re applying to
  • Most of the content of your cover letter should be factual , without any fluff or generalizations

At Novorésumé, we’re committed to helping you get the job you deserve, every step of the way! Follow our blog to stay up to date with the industry-leading advice. Or, check out some of our top guides…

  • How to Write a Motivational Letter
  • How to Write a Resume with No Work Experience
  • Most Common Interview Questions and Answers

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StandOut CV

11 Cover letter templates with examples

Andrew Fennell photo

Not sure what type of cover letter is going to catch the eye of hiring managers, so they actually read your CV?

A well-written cover letter can be a game-changer in your job search, so long as you think carefully about what you include.

No need to panic, though.

For an easy win, use one of our 11 impressive cover letter templates, along with inspirational examples and a step-by-step writing guide.

Bold CV builder - small

Basic cover letter template

Dear [Recruiter’s name],

I am writing to apply for the [Job title] at [Company name], as advertised on [Website name]. With [Number of years of experience] in [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible].

During my current job at [Company name], I [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible].

I am eager to bring my [Mention suitable skill + aspirations] to the [Job title] at [Employer’s name] and I am available for an interview at your earliest convenience.

Kind regards,

[Name] [Phone number] [Email]

Basic cover letter example

Basic cover letter example

Short cover letter template

Hi [Recruiter name],

I’d like to express my interest in the role of [Job title] as advertised on [Website name].

I am currently working in a [Current role] role for [Current employer], where I am responsible for [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible].

I’m looking for a new challenge that will [Aspirations + mention of suitable skill].

It would be great to hear from you, and I am available to interview at any time.

Short cover letter example

Short cover letter example

Admin cover letter template

Good morning [Hiring Manager],

I am writing to submit my application for the position of [Role name] at [Company name]. As a passionate and committed individual with [Number of years] of experience and a track record of [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible], I am excited about the opportunity to contribute to the continued success of your institution.

I have gained valuable insights into the [Core responsibilities of role + more quantified achievements.] In my current role as [Current role], I have continuously facilitated positive change and enhanced [Company name’s] reputation.

Some notable achievements I would like to mention include [List quantified achievements].

With all my experience and a [Qualification] in [Subject], I hope that you recognise my enthusiasm and will consider me for the position.

Kind regards, [Name] [Phone number] [Email address]

Admin cover letter example

Admin cover letter example

Finance cover letter template

I am excited to apply for the [Job title] at [Company name]. As a results-orientated professional with a track record of [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible], I am confident that my expertise aligns perfectly with the needs of your organisation.

With [Number of years] of experience, I have developed [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible].

In my current role as a [Current role] at [Current employer], I implemented a [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible].

Thank you for considering my application. I look forward to the possibility of further discussing my qualifications, skills, and contributions I will bring as your new [Job title].

Finance cover letter example

Finance cover letter example

Sales cover letter template

I hope you’re well. I am writing to apply for the [Job title] at [Company name]. With [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible].

I am eager to apply my proactive and goal-orientated approach to drive revenue growth at [Company name]. I am available for an interview at your earliest convenience to discuss how my dedication and skills can contribute to the success of your sales team.

Sales cover letter example

Sales cover letter example

Customer service cover letter template

I’d like to apply for the position of [Job title] as advertised on [Website name].

With [Years] of experience in customer-facing positions for leading retail companies, I have gathered extensive customer service skills in [Type of setting].

In my current role with [Company name], I am responsible for [Role responsibilities + quantified achievement if possible].

My role has given me [Aspirations + mention suitable skill].

I believe my skill sets and product knowledge will allow me to fit perfectly with the requirements you are seeking in a candidate, and I am available for an interview at short notice.

Customer service cover letter example

Customer service cover letter example

Project management cover letter template

I am interested in applying for the role of [Job title] . My experience in [List core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible].

I am enclosing my CV for your consideration, which further highlights my experience, which I am positive fully meets the demands of this role.

Project management cover letter example

Project management cover letter example

Education cover letter template

I hope you’re well.

I am writing concerning the advert for a [Job title] at [Name of educational setting]. Over the past [Number of years], I have [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible].

I am seeking a new opportunity that will allow me to [Aspirations + mention of suitable skill].

I am keen to talk to you more about the job role, and I look forward to hearing from you.

Education cover letter example

Education cover letter example

Internal promotion cover letter template

Hey [Recruiter name],

I hope you and the team are well! I am thrilled to apply for the promotion to [Job title] of the [Department] team at [Company name], as advertised on [Website name]. With my [Number of years] of service as a [Current role], within the company, supported by [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible].

As a dedicated member of staff, I am eager to streamline and innovate the administrative operations at [Company name] in this new role. I would love to discuss my vision for this role further in an interview at your discretion.

All the best, [Name] [Phone number] [Email address]

Internal promotion cover letter example

Internal promotion cover letter example

Student cover letter template

Good morning [Recruiter name],

I would like to submit my application for the [Job title] at [Company name], where I believe my skills in [Industry] can make a valuable contribution.

As a highly driven [Core responsibilities of studies + quantified achievement if possible].

I am eager to continue learning and to have the opportunity to work alongside the team at [Employer’s name]. I am available for an interview at your convenience to further discuss my qualifications. Thank you for considering my application.

Student cover letter example

Student cover letter example

No experience cover letter template

I am an enthusiastic [Job title/student] at [Current employer/School or university name] with excellent [Core skills], seeking to apply for the [Job title] at [Company name].

In my current role as [Current role] at [Current employer], I [Core responsibilities of role + quantified achievement if possible].

I am excited to contribute my [Aspirations + mention of suitable skill]. I am available for an interview from [Insert date] and I am eager to discuss how my skills can benefit your company’s success.

Thank you for considering my application.

Sincerely, [Name] [Phone number] [Email address]

No experience cover letter example

No experience cover letter

How to write a cover letter

Here are five steps on how to write a cover letter to ensure you get hiring managers in the UK and beyond to look at your CV .

Include your cover letter within the email or message

When submitting your job application, always include your cover letter within the body of your email or message. Never attached it as a separate document.

“But why?”, you ask.

Well, you should instantly grab the recruiter’s attention the moment they look at your application. If they have to endure the hassle of opening a document, it slows everything down, and they may not even bother.

Here’s how to include your cover letter in the body of your application message:

Where to write cover letter

Tailor your greeting by directly addressing the recruiter

To get your cover letter off to a great start, make a brilliant first impression by using the hiring manager or recruiter’s name.

Avoid sounding overly formal or informal, though.

For instance, you could address the recruiter using:

  • Hi [insert recruiter’s name]
  • Hi [insert department/team name]

Skip the conventional “Dear Sir or Madam” unless you’re targeting highly formal companies.

Here are a few tips on how to locate the recruiter’s name:

  • Check the job ad – Sometimes, you can find their name and email address within the job advert itself.
  • Visit the company website – Look at the “About Us” section to unearth the contact info for the recruitment team or head of department.
  • Use LinkedIn – If you’re having a hard time pinning down the specific team and company related to the job opening, a quick search can reveal the person in charge of hiring for that specific job.

If you have no success in finding their name, don’t stress. Just say “Hi” – that’ll more than do the trick. Aim for a greeting that is both professional and welcoming.

Here are some examples of how to address your cover letter if you have trouble finding their name:

How to address a cover letter if you can't find a name

Be personable and professional

Your cover letter should be a blend of personality and professionalism .

Coming across as too casual can make you sound a little unprofessional while appearing excessively formal can make you look stiff.

Go for a professional, friendly tone.

Begin with something such as, “I hope you’re well” to bring a personal touch.

Professional greeting

Pinpoint your applicable skills

Your cover letter’s purpose? To entice hiring managers to read your CV . To do this, quickly allude to your relevant skills tailored to the job you’re interested in.

Review the job description and note the essential qualifications and skills the recruiter wants.

Suitable skills in cover letter

Concentrate on these skills in your cover letter and tell them why you’re perfect for the role.

This gives recruiters the confidence they need to consider you for the job.

For instance, you could say:

  • Finance – “My strategic planning skills allowed me to identify key growth opportunities and revenue drivers, ultimately leading to the impressive revenue increase of over £100 million.”
  • Marine engineer – “I excel in the development and implementation of predictive maintenance programs, ensuring equipment reliability and longevity. I implemented a predictive maintenance programme that reduced downtime of critical equipment by 25%, as well as saved £120K+ annually through purchasing supplies from suitable industry vendors.”
  • Medical writer – “My capacity to translate complex medical information into clear and accessible content for various audiences is a core skill that has empowered me to produce 15 high-quality educational materials. Moreover, my strong research proficiency was instrumental in increasing audience comprehension and patient satisfaction scores by 30% and 15% respectively.”

Conclude and add a professional signature

Your sign-off must be warm. So, say something like “Best regards” or “Kind regards.” Just be yourself while staying polite.

To add a nice finishing touch to your cover letter , add a professional signature at the very bottom.

Doing so helps the person on the other end know how to reach you and gives your cover letter a professional touch.

Here’s what you need to include in your professional sign-off:

  • Your full name – Add your first and last name, like “Jessica Smith”. It’s just there so recruiters know who you are.
  • Your phone number – Preferably, put your mobile number in here so recruiters can quickly get hold of you.
  • Your email address – This must be a professional email address, like [email protected]. Don’t include an overly casual email – remember, this is a job application.

If you like, you could also include a couple of extra details:

  • Your job title – For example, “Administrator” or “Delivery Driver.”
  • A link to your LinkedIn – If you use LinkedIn, insert a link to your profile – this is like your professional social media.

Cover letter professional signature

  • Career Advice
  • What is a letter of...

What is a letter of transmittal? (plus template and example)

9 min read · Updated on November 06, 2023

Elizabeth Openshaw

Impart vital information within a concise and well-written letter

Trawling through pages and pages of an important document can take time and a lot of effort. Wouldn't it be much easier to have a summary? A shortened version of what that document contains? At least then, you'd have a rough idea of whether you need to read it through immediately, or whether it can wait until you've got the time to sit down in a quiet room with a cup of tea and really give it your full concentration.

In this article, we'll explore what a letter of transmittal actually is, share tips on how to compile a professional letter, and even give you an example and a template which you can adapt to suit your own circumstances.

What is a letter of transmittal?

A letter of transmittal is a business letter that accompanies any kind of document, like a financial report or the analysis of a company's market research. Its main aim is to inform the recipient of the specific context in which to place the document, while giving the sender a permanent and formal record of having sent the material.

Top tips on writing a professional letter of transmittal

Just like any covering letter you want to make a good first impression, as this letter of transmittal will be the first thing the recipient reads before diving into the document it refers to. With that in mind, make sure you follow the tips below to craft a letter that's informative, succinct, and clear.

First off, ensure you're actually  sending it to the right person . It might sound obvious, but it's worth double checking you've got the right name and contact details, otherwise the important missive and letter could end up in the wrong hands. That would be a real faux pas, especially if the document contains sensitive or confidential information.

You don't want to dash off a quick letter of transmittal without a thought. While the transmittal letter isn't the main player in this instance - the attached document is - you still want it to be as professional as possible.

With that in mind, you can use a conversational tone within the letter, so it's not too stiff or formal.

Be totally clear as to why you're sending this document or report to the recipient. It means the person receiving the letter of transmittal will then have an idea of what they have, how to handle it in the appropriate manner, and if any actions need to be taken.

Summarise the main purpose and aspects of the document. See the letter of transmittal template below for how to set this out and what to include.

Keep it short and sweet. It's the document that's the main subject here, so don't go into too much detail within the letter of transmittal. You want the recipient to read your letter swiftly and easily, grasping the details, and then move onto the main event with a clear idea of what they need to do going forward.

Finish with a positive tone. You want the receiver of the letter and document to be motivated to enact whatever actions are required next, whether that's just reading the document or taking some sort of action. Keeping the tone light should achieve this. 

What is a perfect example of a letter of transmittal?

The key thing to remember, when drafting a letter of transmittal, is that you immediately want to get across the context of the document it's attached to in a few short, pithy paragraphs. It's basically explaining the contents of the document in a concise way.

No more than a page in length, the letter should contain all the usual elements of any other business letter, heading it with your name and contact details, the date, the recipient's name and address, and the reason you're writing.

Introduce yourself 

Start the transmittal letter with who you are and why you're writing to them.

Inform them why you're reaching out 

This is the part where you explain your reasons for enclosing the attached report, bringing their attention to any pertinent information that requires any action on their part.

Thank or acknowledge those who have contributed towards the document

It's courteous to identify and thank those who have had a part in helping to put the document or report together.

Finish off with any requests or required follow-ups

Make sure it's clear within the letter what the recipient needs to do next - if anything.

For a more detailed insight into how to compile a letter of transmittal, take a look at the template below.

A letter of transmittal template

Below is a letter of transmittal template that you and colleagues can use time and time again, as a standard outline, when sending a letter of transmittal.


Dear [Mr, Mrs, or Ms Surname],

[The opening paragraph should contain the title of the document attached and the purpose of the letter. It should also detail when the document was written and by whom.]

[The body of the letter of transmittal can include information about the methods used to craft the report, as well as an overview of the accompanying report, project proposal, or confidential document. Here, you can give an oversight of results, highlight the main areas that the recipient should focus on, or draw particular attention to any surprising findings.]

[The concluding paragraph will detail out what needs to be done by the recipient and any additional notes with regards to the attached document. You can also offer your assistance in interpreting any of the findings or ask for a call to action.]

If you have any questions regarding the attached report, please contact [name of principal contact] on [phone number]. 

Yours sincerely,

[Signature and printed name]

A letter of transmittal example

Now that you have the know-how to draft a top quality transmittal letter, let's put it all into practice with a letter of transmittal example that can be customised each time to suit different situations.

Delia Johnson

Accountants R Us,

125 Acacia Avenue,

Birmingham B14 3XX

Chloe Brown,

ABC Services,

Old Rose Lane,

Sutton Coldfield SC15 3ZZ

3 rd  January 2024

Dear Mrs Brown,

I have completed your accounts and tax return for 2022 / 2023 and I enclose our office copy of your business accounts for the year ended Mar 2023. I would be grateful if you could review these carefully and, if you are in agreement, please sign and date the declaration at the bottom of page two before returning the accounts to me.

I further enclose your tax return for the year ended Apr 2023, incorporating your accounts details. Please go through this carefully to make sure I have answered all questions on your behalf correctly and that no further details need to be added. If you are in agreement, please sign and date the declaration on the front sheet, where indicated, before tearing off the sheet and returning it to me only.

Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to enclose an invoice of my fees for the work carried out on your behalf, which I hope you will find in order.

If you have any additional questions, please don't hesitate to contact me at delia.p.johns[email protected] or on my work phone which is 0121 123 4567.


The best times to include a letter of transmittal

A letter of transmittal serves different purposes, such as acting as an explanation or a record. Certain  documents, such as ones containing sensitive information, need a letter of transmittal to explain to the reader what they are receiving and why.  

Below are some of the situations when you might need to include a letter of transmittal.

Confidential documents

It's a good idea to warn the recipient that the documents contain sensitive or confidential detail, so they know that it's for their eyes only. Including a letter of transmittal here will prevent any misunderstanding or sharing of any private information, as it will be set out clearly before they open the documentation.

Financial reports

Financial reports often need further explanation and more context than what's actually contained in the report, so if you're distributing something complex like a financial report, don't hold back in including extra clarification.

Technical documents

When forwarding technical documents to relevant parties, it's worth taking a moment to consider who your audience is. Not everyone is au fait with  technical  jargon. Try to imagine which part of the document might be too complicated and pre-empt any questions by addressing this within the letter of transmittal that's attached.

Summarising your proposal in a succinct manner, by distilling it into a few pithy sentences, can give the reader a bit of an idea of what you're on about before they delve into the text-heavy document. Within your letter of transmittal, you can take the opportunity to remind the recipient of who you are and why you're offering the proposal to them.

There are a few other times when you might want to take advantage of including a transmittal letter, including:

Sending a draft that needs to be reviewed or be approved

Emphasising the key findings of a report

Instructing a recipient that they need to take some sort of action with the document

Offering an explanation of why the document should be ingested

Describing how a plan has changed course or overcome challenges

Delivering the results of a project

Is a letter of transmittal the same as a cover letter?

A  cover letter  is a brief, formal letter that's attached to another document - usually a CV.

In that way, a letter of transmittal could be said to be a type of cover letter. However, transmittal letters have a specific function, as they're designed to accompany a larger document or report, with added details that highlight key information within that document and any action that the receiver must take to move things forward.

A letter of transmittal forms part of a professional group of documents designed to inform colleagues and senior management about important, need-to-know information. What you need to know now is how to improve your CV, if you're keen to facilitate a move up the career ladder. Give yourself a head start by checking out TopCV's  free CV review . It only takes a few moments to upload your CV in order to receive valuable advice on this very important document.

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