October 4, 2023

Before You Write That Cover Letter, Read This

Your cover letter serves as an introduction that highlights your major accomplishments and fit for a job opening. It can supplement a resume by explaining moves, gaps in employment, applications from a distance, and more.

To help you craft a top-notch cover letter, here are five tips from Elizabeth Mimms, a Career Services specialist at CSU.

  • Each cover letter must specifically target an employer and a position. If you are unclear as to whom to address the letter to, use resources such as LinkedIn, the company’s website or Facebook to find contact information – including human resources’ points of contact. Also, use the same job title listed in the posting in your cover letter throughout.
  • Sometimes the job description can be vague. Research the company and/or position so that you can explain why you are interested, who you are in terms of your education and why the employer should consider you. Try using similar “buzz words” or industry specific terminology in the job description or company profile.
  • Focus on addressing qualified and quantifiable skills. Avoid subjective wording such as “hard worker,” “team player” and “passionate.” Anyone can say he/she possess these qualifications, but it is better to demonstrate them in the resume or cover letter through examples.
  • Although your phone number and email address have surely shown up somewhere on the resume and cover letter, be sure to add them again to the last paragraph. Never make a recruiter or an employer search for contact information.
  • Do not include a timeline in which you will follow-up. There is no telling when the application was received, if it has been reviewed, whether you have been considered or not, or even if the employer has time to talk to you.Remember, when writing a cover letter, its sometimes the small things that can make a big difference.

Got questions? Please contact CSU Career Services at 877-297-6192 or send them an email to