Applying for a job with no prior work experience can be challenging. Fortunately, there are ways for you to write a cover letter to capture the hiring manager interest. Describing the right skills can benefit the company and provide value can make your cover letter stand out among other applicants with work experience.
The first step is to try and find out to whom you are sending your cover letter. Most job applications you will find yourself sending a cover letter through an automated system online. If at all possible, it is better to find out the name of the person in charge of managing the recruitment process, either through LinkedIn or a company. This will be beneficial in helping you to craft a more personalized cover letter.
In your opening paragraph, you will want to establish a connection between yourself and the person going through your cover letter. You can do this by providing two essential pieces of information: how you know about the job opening and the position to which you are applying.
If a friend or ex-colleague has referred you and has specifically informed you to mention their name, you can mention it on your cover letter. This can also be important if your application is going to a human resource department that probably needs to track its recruitment process. It’s also important to mention the position name and any corresponding number from the job application or listing. These details can help the hiring person process applications more efficiently, especially if they happen to be hiring for multiple positions.
The body content of your paragraph needs to elaborate specific details about why you are a great fit for the position. Spend time researching the job listing and try to look for a relatable experience you can think of. Usually, you can find most job listings of the job duties and responsibilities which can give you more of an idea if you are qualified as opposed to the qualification requirements.
If you have no work experience then you can draw from your education, whether it be college or high school. Look through the job listing for skills that are transferable, meaning skills that apply to any industry a job is in.
You will find that most entry-level jobs will have transferable skills and skillset specifically around a worker’s attitude and seriousness towards employment. These are the skills you should be mentioning in your cover letter. Again, if you were to take your college experience as an example, perhaps there is a time when you improved a grade significantly over a semester. While most people may think it’s not suitable to mention these things but you will notice that employers would rather see you be able to put something together describing yourself and your work ethic instead of saying things like you have zero work experience, but you will do your best.
Your cover letter should also mention the reasons why you want to work for their company. Thoroughly conduct your research on the company website and sites related to the company. Find out what are their values, goals and who are the people working behind the scenes. All of these findings are your opportunities for you to establish a unique connection with the person going through your cover letter.
Once you are done with the body of your cover letter, you will want to conclude with a short one or two-sentence paragraph. Your closing should mention a notification of how and when you intend to follow up and your contact details along with your availability for an interview. Lastly, thank them for their time and consideration.
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You Jing is a content writer who writes career and lifestyle contents to inspire job seekers and employers alike on their journey to work-life balance, empowerment and transformation in their career path.
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