Cover Letter

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Cover Letter Evaluation Questions

  • Does the cover letter introduce the résumé?
  • Does it state interest in a particular position?
  • Does it highlight applicant’s strengths?
  • Does it attempt to gain an interview?
  • Does the opening gain attention? How? Does it address the reader by name?
  • Is the letter solicited or unsolicited? How is this evident?
  • Is the tone confident without being arrogant?
  • Is there redundancy between the letter and the résumé? Does the letter explain and highlight the résumé rather than just repeat it?
  • How does the letter stress what the applicant can do for the company? Does the body emphasize reader benefits?
  • Does discussion of qualifications address a particular job?
  • Are relevant personal traits discussed, like teamwork, responsibility, initiative?
  • Does the letter's close motivate action by asking for an interview — not by asking for a job?
  • Is contact information and time given?
  • How many sentences begin with an “I”? Can these be cut down to emphasize how the reader will benefit form hiring the “I”?
  • Does the letter sell the applicant?
  • Is the latter signed?


  • Is block style correct?
  • Does the paper match the résumé’s?
  • Does the letter use a personally designed letterhead? Is it a Word template? Is it professional, not over-the-top?
  • Is white space used effectively?
  • Does the design pass the “blurred-eye” test?

Professional Communication