How Long Should a Cover Letter Be?

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If you want to know how to make your cover letter stand out from your competitors, then you should get acquainted with the technicalities of its writing. It’s just like crafting your CV: if you don’t know proper formatting standards, obligatory sections, and bot-beating techniques, you’ll have a hard time.

Many job seekers don’t even bother working on their applications by themselves. Instead, they prefer turning to a top rated CV creation service and investing in their career right away. So, if you like the easier way, you can use expert help as well. But if you want to figure out certain aspects of cover letter writing on your own, keep reading.

Now, let’s find out how long your cover letter should be.

Ideal Cover Letter Length

The perfect length is a half page to a full page. If it’s too wordy, the recruiter can very well ignore it. If it’s too short, you will come off lazy. Here is the general rule: cover letters should not go beyond one page. So, think about how you can organize the letter to match that rule but remember: other vital factors will affect the outcome.

Here are the specifics that you can refer back to when creating a cover letter:

  • total number of paragraphs: aim for 3 to 6;
  • word count: around 250 to 400;
  • The number of pages: half page to full page but never more than one page.

Take into account that recruiters get tons of applications every day, and they typically spend only a small amount of time on each. You need to make your letter impactful to retain the recruiter’s attention and make them read your resume too.

Follow the Prospective Employer’s Requirements

There are job posts and employers who include specific prerequisites for the submissions that they want to receive, so just check for that before you send your application. Maybe they’ll provide a prompt or word count to adhere to. Obviously, just follow their guidelines if this is the case.

Many job applicants don’t read the job description and employer’s requirements thoroughly enough, and you could be at an advantage when you do.

Use a Short but Clear Subject Line

Firstly, try writing an intriguing and brief subject line for your cover letter. If you want to stand out, you should take care of all the little details when you’re submitting an application. They make a difference, after all.

A good standard to follow is to include your name and the position you want to get:

“Subject line: Marie Antoinette, Queen of France”

Be Concise

Your cover letter is meant to help you and serve a few functions.

  1. It’s there to tell recruiters more about your personality. If your resume is there to show your work experience, then your cover letter complements it by adding one more layer to your presentation.
  2. It’s your opportunity to entice recruiters, not to give them extra work and make them go through long text passages. This means you’ll have the added pressure of only writing what really matters.

And that brings us to the next point.

Only Include Relevant Experiences

Unless you’ve been instructed otherwise, write about accomplishments directly related to the job you’re pursuing. Present it in a manner that’s impactful and intriguing. Don’t write like a bore; be excited about your presentation. Make recruiters see why they should hire you with the few words you actually have.

Just avoid anything that doesn’t add value to your application and stick to the strongest points of you as a candidate. Qualifications, achievements, and skills are a good start. Here’s something to aim for in the cover letter body.

  • In the first paragraph: write about a substantial achievement to grab the recruiter’s attention.
  • In the second paragraph: take an excerpt of what they expect you to do in this job position and prove to them that you can do it by mentioning any past challenges and duties if applicable.
  • In the third paragraph: explain why you want to work for this company. What part of its brand’s mission and culture motivates you?
  • In the fourth one: ask the recruiter to schedule a meeting with you.
  • In the end: emphasize your motivation to become part of the company’s team.

Additional Tips

Here are some extra points to finish this off:

  • match the style of your resume and your cover letter; it will look professional and thoughtful;
  • avoid writing in cliches: maintain a formal tone but show your unique personality.

Final Thoughts

We wish you luck in your career, and we hope our article will help you write an irresistible cover letter. And if you still have trouble crafting your job application, don’t hesitate to get help from career experts and professional cover letter writers. After all, your end goal is worth it, so use every opportunity to boost your chances of landing your dream job.


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Kokou Adzo

Kokou Adzo is a stalwart in the tech journalism community, has been chronicling the ever-evolving world of Apple products and innovations for over a decade. As a Senior Author at Apple Gazette, Kokou combines a deep passion for technology with an innate ability to translate complex tech jargon into relatable insights for everyday users.

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