Cover letter . what must go in? In addition to the correct structure, an interesting and convincing application text is crucial to stand out from competitors. In addition, eye-catchers can be used to make the employer curious about you.
Tips, examples as well as sample cover letters for your successful application
Table of contents
What a cover letter is for?
The Cover letter is the most important part of the application. It is addressed directly to the recipient. This document tells the employer that it is an application for a specific position. It must be clearly recognizable that you have many skills of the desired candidate.
Cover letter example
Design according to DIN 5008
The Cover letter is the first part of your application that the recipient reads. He gets a first impression of you and compares the job requirements with your profile. Therefore, try to make the cover letter as interesting as possible to arouse the employer’s interest and curiosity, your Application to be read in full. The core points of the cover letter are the suitability and motivation for the job and the company. Therefore, highlight your personal and professional strengths and go to relevant(!), previous activities a. A cover letter consists of exactly one DIN A4 page. It consists of the cover letter header and the cover letter text. For the layout, you should follow the guidelines of DIN 5008 (especially in the IT industry).
Standards for page layout
The standard for the general structure of the cover letter is defined in DIN 5008 and includes the following values:
- Left margin: 24.1 mm
- Right margin: min. 8.1 mm
- Page margin at the bottom: 16.9 mm
- Top margin: 16.9 mm
The right font
It is best to choose standard fonts, such as Arial or Times New Roman, in 12 point font size with hyphenation. Font and font size are to be used consistently across all application materials.
This belongs in the cover letter header
Start the cover letter with the cover letter header. Cover letter header includes sender’s address, recipient’s address, date with location, subject and salutation.
You start with your address as a block in the upper left corner. The address includes name, street, house number, postal code, phone number with area code and if necessary. Your private E-mail address. Telephone numbers are not written together, but divided into functional components by spaces (example: 03594 745682224).
Alternatively, you can also write the sender’s address in abbreviated form list one line directly above the recipient’s address. This will save you space. However, use a smaller font size, such as font size 6.
This sender’s address is followed by an address block with address data on the company.
The recipient block usually has the following format:
- Company name with legal form
- Human Resources
- Contact person (optional)
- Street, house number or. Mailbox
- Zip code and city
- Country (optional)
Inquire if necessary. by telephone, whether there is a personnel department or a direct contact person. Generally, however, the complete address with the contact person is in the job advertisement. "To hands" is no longer used. In addition, there is no blank line between street and city.
Sender’s address and recipient’s address are aligned to the left. The space to the right of the address blocks is reserved for the company and left blank.
Write application online
– in the application editor –
Design according to DIN 5008
The sender can be represented in the cover letter as a one-liner.
Stylish design in various color options
Elegant design in serif font
For optimal use of space, the address block in the cover letter can be displayed as a single line.
Different color variations are available.
Design in blue accent
The sender can be represented in the cover letter as a one-liner.
Design with right alignment
Design with centered header
Maximum use of space in the cover letter
Date and place
Date and place will be right-justified above the first subject line specified. As a date, select the time when you expect to send your application. The place is listed only if it differs between the recipient and the sender. For the date, you can choose between alphanumeric and numeric format. In numerical format, use the period ("29.05.2015") or the hyphen (2015-05-29) as a separator. In the alphanumeric format, the month is written out and, in contrast to the numeric format, there is no leading "0" for single-digit day information set. Avoid "the between date and place.
Leave under the recipient address 4 lines free and formulate a meaningful subject line. The subject can be single or double-spaced.
In the first subject line is written what you are applying for.
"Application as industrial clerk"
"Application for an apprenticeship as an industrial clerk from 09/2015"
"Application for a 2-week internship in the field of maintenance from 09/2015"
Highlight this first subject line in bold type.
Optionally, you can add a second subject line add. You use this to establish the reference to a job advertisement or to a contact.
If, for example, you have established contact by telephone in advance, write: "My telephone call with . from . "
In the case of a job advertisement, write: "Your job offer in the XY newspaper of 12.01.2015"
In the case of a one-line subject, leave for the salutation 2 lines free. If, on the other hand, you have formulated a two-line subject, leave only the following for the salutation 1 line free.
If the contact person is known, write: "Dear Mr . " or "Dear Ms . ". Do not forget the academic title!
If the contact person is unknown and cannot be determined, write: "Dear Sir or Madam". The impersonal salutation should only be used in case of emergency.
The most important thing is the application text
The salutation is followed by the application text. This is divided into Introductory sentence, main body and greeting formula. Here it depends essentially on the actual contents and the correct formulation. If you succeed Motivation and suitability If you want to clearly emphasize the importance of your application for the desired position, you can already convince the recruiter here and arouse interest in reading the entire application file.
Do not write a standard cover letter
Popular standard cover letter texts do not lead to the target. Rather, it is important to take into account the individuality of the applicant as well as the potential employer and to choose appropriate wording in the cover letter text. The application text must always be adapted to the job and the company. The reader must have the feeling with the letter that you have really invested time in the application and thus in his company.
Write always in the sense of the company success. What benefit you will get from working for the company is (unfortunately) only secondary. The focus is on the benefit to the company resulting from your employment. Introduce that you are the product and the company is the customer. The cover letter is there to promote the product to the customer.
How to write an interesting introduction?
The introduction begins in lower case and comprises a paragraph of no more than three sentences. The goal is to make the reader curious about the rest of the text. To do this, it is best to integrate into the introduction a headline in which you mention your best qualification that will bring the most benefits to the company. Of course, you should also mention this advantage.
Ideally, you can also use the introductory sentence to say thank you for a telephone call or other contact. This way you will be remembered by the reader and the cover letter will make a more personal impression. You can also briefly explain which specific contents you remembered positively.
Generally avoid introductions such as"I have read your job advertisement with great interest" or even"I hereby apply." If you are not interested, you would not have applied. What you are applying for (job and advertisement) is written in the subject line. You show that you are applying even by simply sending application documents.
Thank you very much for the informative and friendly phone call. I find your statements about the introduction of the A1 system very interesting. As a trained IT specialist, I have already gained extensive experience with this system in my work at XY AG and I am therefore sure that I am the right person for the job.
Main part – Provide arguments for your suitability and motivation!
After the introduction, start by expressing your motivation to the company. Explain what you particularly like about working in this company and what makes this company stand out from others. Feel free to express your own preferences here.
Then go to all job requirements (see our post Must-can requirements) a. Justify your suitability on the basis of knowledge, experience and interests. Only mention qualifications that are relevant to the position. In addition, try to mention one or two skills that are not listed in the job posting but could be useful for the position. In this way, you show that you are thinking along.
Lead with a mention of your previous activities no ratings but limit yourself to descriptions. If you should mention personal qualities, you must prove them by example. You can safely do without self-evident. So meanwhile every second applicant lists team ability. However, you must mention qualities that set you apart from competitors.
If your previous fields of activity show parallels to the job, you should also mention them. However, do not leave the activities isolated, but explain in a follow-up sentence what benefit this means for the new position. Generally avoid giving dates. That is what the resume is for.
Always formulate short and meaningful sentences. To avoid redundancy, it is best to check after each sentence whether it contains new information that is important for the position you are applying for. After every three sentences, start a new paragraph.
Pay attention to the right choice of words and use active verbs. Do not write for example". could I collect.", but". collected."
The main part is concluded with a Closing sentence ends. In this sentence, the interview is included in the cover letter. Refrain from using the subjunctive ("would") and "could") as well as if-then formulations. Do not put the personnel responsible person also with formulations, like"When may I introduce myself to you?", under pressure. A common closing sentence is"ÜI am looking forward to your invitation to an interview."
Good to know: We also have sample applications that you can customize directly online. Writing an application is so easy!