Guide to Writing a Great Cover Letter

The main purpose of a cover letter is to inform the potential employer about the type of position you are seeking. The cover letter is your opportunity to sell yourself and at the same time add a personal touch to your résumé.
 
Most cover letters can be written in three paragraphs using less than 200-500 words. Here is a brief format outline:
 
1. The first paragraph introduces your purpose for writing. Perhaps you got the company's name from a networking contact or from an ad or trade article. The first paragraph is a good place to mention it.
   
2. The second paragraph briefly summarizes your experience as it relates to your prospective employer's needs. It should answer the basic question of "why should the company hire you?"
   
3. Like any good sales pitch the final paragraph should propose a course of action. Use this paragraph to propose an interview or better yet indicate you will be contacting your potential employer to arrange an interview.