7 Short Cover Letter Samples to Inspire You + Writing Tips

Many job seekers write long cover letters, hoping they can catch the hiring manager’s attention with all their skills and experiences. But this strategy is ......
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Kels Styles
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November 23, 2023

Many job seekers write long cover letters, hoping they can catch the hiring manager’s attention with all their skills and experiences. But this strategy is often ineffective. A short cover letter is the golden ticket to your dream job. 

Keeping it short helps your cover letter stand out. Yes, less really is more—if the “less” you choose are the right parts. But don’t worry, we’re here to lend a helping hand. 

We’ll look at seven short cover letter examples and highlight what makes them great. 

Why Short Cover Letters Can Be Better Than Long Cover Letters

While content is crucial, the length of your cover letter plays a pivotal role. Here’s why a concise cover letter can be more effective than a lengthy one.

Short Cover Letters Have an Immediate Impact

A shorter letter gets straight to the point so that the most critical information is immediately accessible. This ensures that vital qualifications and experiences aren't lost in a waterfall of words and unnecessary details.

A Brief Cover Letter Respects the Reader’s Time

Do you know that feeling when opening a wordy email just goes on and on? We’d dread reading that, too. 

Hiring managers sift through dozens, if not hundreds, of applications. A concise cover letter respects their time constraints and increases the likelihood of your letter being read in its entirety.

A Comprehensive Cover Letter Highlights Precision and Communication Skills

Being straightforward matters a lot in professional communication. Small talk is nice, but for speed, efficiency, and understanding, it’s best to keep it to a minimum. Especially now that so many people work remotely, and Slack and email are our main channels of communication. 

A to-the-point cover letter demonstrates your ability to communicate essential information efficiently, which is a valuable skill in many professions.

A Short Cover Letter Reduces Redundancy

How many times have you read something and thought, "Didn't they just say that?" With a shorter cover letter, you’re less likely to sound like a broken record. 

By sticking to a shorter format, you’ll avoid reiterating points found in your resume and keep your cover letter content fresh and engaging.

Short Cover Letters Enhance Memorability

Ever tried recalling a long-winded story? How does that compare to your memories of a catchy jingle? A longer cover letter is hard to recall correctly. 

Short and sweet tends to stick. This makes your application more likely to pop into a hiring manager's mind during decision time. Make sure there’s one especially memorable thing in your short letter. This will make it even easier for them to remember.

A Short Cover Letter Reduces Potential Errors

Fewer words mean fewer opportunities for mistakes. A shorter letter is easier to proofread and ensures that every word you use serves a purpose.

Structure of a Short Cover Letter 

Writing a cover letter requires precision and clarity. This ensures that despite its brevity, it packs a punch. Here's a streamlined structure to guide you in writing a brief cover letter that hits the spot.

Your short cover letter should include:

  1. A greeting: Add in the hiring manager’s name if possible. This personal touch immediately builds a connection. Keep in mind that you're writing a letter to a person, not just a company. 
  1. An introduction: Add a sentence or two about who you are and the position you're applying for. This sets the context right away.
  1. Your key qualifications: Highlight 2–3 of your top skills or experiences that directly relate to the job. Think of this as your spotlight moment. It doesn't have to be as complete as your resume. The two should complement each other.
  1. Your understanding of the job description: Ensure the hiring manager that you know what’s crucial in this role by talking about the impact it makes. Don’t just repeat the job description. Remember, you’re writing a short cover letter, so exclude all unnecessary information. 
  1. Your relevant achievements: Mention a notable accomplishment that showcases how you've applied your skills in a real-world scenario.
  1. Your enthusiasm for the role: Add a brief statement expressing your interest in the position and the company, showing you're not just looking for any job, but this job specifically.
  1. A call to action: Conclude by indicating your desire for the next steps, whether it's an interview or a follow-up discussion. You can even ask the hiring manager a question to ensure a follow-up.
  1. A sign-off: Add a professional closing to your cover letters (eg., "Sincerely" or "Best regards") followed by your full name.

By sticking to this structure, your short cover letter will be concise, relevant, impactful, and ready to grab the attention of your potential employer. Now, let’s dig into some short cover letter examples

7 Short Cover Letter Samples for 2023

These seven short cover letter examples come from different industries. Each has a slightly different approach, but they all have one thing in common: their length. 

Pick a short cover letter sample that best matches your job search and customize it to your needs, or find your own perfect template.

1. Administrative Assistant Cover Letter Template

 Administrate Assistant Cover Letter Template

Why this cover letter works:

  1. Clear and concise: This short cover letter sample template is designed to present information succinctly so that it respects the time of hiring managers and makes it easy for them to identify key points. It’s also very to the point, which is important for a role like this. 
  1. Motivation: It outlines what the candidate enjoyed in relevant roles, which makes it more personalized and authentic. 
  1. Tailored for admins: This isn't a one-size-fits-all short cover letter template. It speaks directly to the administrative assistant role.
  1. Key skills front and center: This short cover letter emphasizes essential skills, and ensures the candidates’s strengths are immediately visible.

2. Machine Learning Engineer Cover Letter Template

Machine Learning Engineer Cover Letter Template

Why this cover letter works:

  1. Purpose-driven: This short cover letter template serves as a tailored introduction for machine learning engineers, and ensures they make a relevant connection with potential employers.
  1. Showing interest: The paragraph that speaks about what the candidate likes in the company makes the letter unique and shows they’ve done their research.
  1. Experience: Speaking about their most recent internship and the practical skills they developed there helps put these skills into context.
  1. Enthusiasm: It’s not just what you write (your skills) but also how you write (your tone). This short cover letter sample is upbeat and enthusiastic, but not too eager.

3. Civil Engineer Cover Letter Template

 Civil Engineer Cover Letter Template

Why this cover letter works:

  1. Practicality: The candidate clearly puts their skills into context, highlighting a specific case they worked on—rather than listing generic skill sets. 
  1. Showing expertise: They then give a more in-depth view into how they worked and who they've worked with. This shows their level of seniority. 
  1. To the point: This short cover letter does not beat around the bush and matches the tone expected for this role.

4. Accountant Cover Letter Template

Accountant Cover Letter Template

Why this cover letter works:

  1. Highlighting soft skills: Before diving into experience and qualifications, this candidate highlights they are aware of their soft skills and strengths.
  1. Experience with tools: This candidate doesn't just speak about what they've done, but also the instruments they feel comfortable working with. 
  1. Enthusiasm: This candidate gets it. Show you're excited, but not overly eager. This letter has a great tone and makes them seem sympathetic to work with.
  1. Practical skills: Rather than listing the skills they have, this candidate speaks about their work experience in the broader sense, which puts their skills into context.

5. Web Designer Cover Letter Template

Web Designer Cover Letter Template

Why this cover letter works:

  1. Personal motivation: This candidate starts off by stating why they’re excited about the role and explaining where their passion lies.
  1. Understanding business: Rather than simply listing their skills, they explain how they understand the impact they have on business results.
  1. Teamwork: You guessed it; it makes the dream work. This candidate shows they know how to work together with other teams, which is crucial for this position.
  1. Commitment to growth: This candidate doesn't shy away from a challenge and clearly communicates what they hope to learn from the role, not just what they’ll bring. 

6. Software Developer Cover Letter Template

Software Developer Cover Letter Template

Why this cover letter works:

  1. Tailored appreciation: This candidate took the time to showcase what they appreciate about the company they’re applying to. This makes their short cover letter less generic and more authentic.
  1. Project-based skills: Rather than just listing their skills, the candidate explains a project they've worked on that encapsulates the relevant skills for the role. 
  1. Accomplishment: Without bragging, the candidate shows something impressive they've done in a previous role, which makes their letter more unique.
  1. Education and experience: The candidate manages to merge the relevant information from their studies with previous employment. This strengthens both elements of their experience. 

7. Sales Cover Letter Template

Sales Cover Letter Template

Why this cover letter works:

  1. Showing admiration: This candidate shows respect to the company by stating they've been following them for a while and outlining what stood out to them.
  1. Showcasing accomplishments: This candidate sells themselves by highlighting a project they're proud of. This is a great sales tactic.
  1. Mixing soft and hard skills: This candidate makes it crystal clear how their soft and hard skills work together to make them a great asset to any organization.
  1. Confidence: As a sales rep, you need confidence. This candidate showcases that in their tone of voice, without being too pushy.

How to Write a Quick and Short Cover Letter That’ll Grab Attention

Why bother? Some people think it’s not worth writing a cover letter because they've heard hiring managers only briefly skim them—or even reply on applicant tracking systems (ATS) to scan them first. 

Of course, most hiring managers don't read the pile of letters they receive with the focus of a twelve-year-old discovering the Harry Potter books for the first time. 

But by making your letter more interesting and captivating from the get-go, you make sure that your most relevant details get both seen and remembered.

Here’s how you write the most attention-grabbing letter.

1. Reflect on the Job Description—but Don’t Repeat It

Take cues from the job you're applying to. Highlight the skills or experiences they emphasize, but not by simply repeating what they’ve said. Instead, tie it into your experience and reflect it back to them that way.  

It doesn't need to be word for word but show you've got the gist of it.

2. Highlight Transferable and Relevant Skills

Don't just list your skills and certifications—put them into context. What have you achieved with them in previous roles? What do you hope to achieve with them in your next role? 

Showcase this hands-on experience and draw parallels between your track record in previous positions and the requirements of the prospective job. 

3. Use the Company Name and Other Details

To adapt a cover letter to the company you're applying to, you must go beyond mentioning their name and how excited you are to see they have an open position. 

If you truly want to personalize your letter, add in a little detail about the company from recent months—a project they worked on, a campaign, or anything else that shows you've done your research. 

4. Add a Memorable Achievement

The best cover letter includes a sprinkle of career highlights. Detail an achievement that not only showcases your skills but also your impact. 

If you've worked on a particular project that you were proud of or played a big role in, mention it! This makes your skills and certifications all the more real. 

5. Make It Skimmable

When we say keep it short, we mean everything: your letter, your paragraphs, and your sentences. Keep these succinct and to the point. 

6. Be Direct and to the Point

With concise cover letters. Every word matters. Ensure you’re straightforward and avoid jargon. You don't impress people with long and difficult sentences—you confuse them. 

7. Watch Your Words

Read your cover letter out loud after you've written the first draft. Does this sound like you? Does it sound like the type of words you'd use? Does it seem the right level of professional and conversational? 

Listening to what your words sound like out loud will also help improve your readability and flow. 

8. Pay Attention to Your Closing Arguments

Many candidates lose steam by the time they reach the final paragraph, so they opt for a generic closing. 

But not you! Your closing paragraph should reaffirm your enthusiasm for the position and availability for further discussion. Make it specific, and personal. 

9. Proofread. Then Do It Again.

A good cover letter is free from errors. Before sending it off, make sure you've checked for grammar, punctuation, or spelling mistakes. If that's not your forte, ask someone else to do it. 

One of the best cover letter tips out there is to make use of AI tools like Grammarly. There really isn't an excuse to not catch mistakes before hitting “send.”

Ready to Start Applying? Make a Short and Sweet Cover Letter With Rezi

Why wrestle with words when Rezi's AI cover letter builder can do the heavy lifting for you? Within minutes, this tool crafts a cover letter that beautifully encapsulates your skills, achievements, and relevant experience in a manner that's tailored to the job description.

For those seeking a dash of inspiration or structure, Rezi offers an array of cover letter templates. These are curated with hiring managers' expectations in mind to ensure every word counts.

FAQs

1. What’s the Fastest Way to Write a Cover Letter?

The fastest way to craft an effective cover letter is by using a tool like Rezi's AI Cover Letter Builder. 

This innovative cover letter builder streamlines the process and ensures that your letter aligns with what many hiring managers look for. It not only saves you time but also guarantees that your cover letter stands out in the stack. 

By inputting details from job ads, your professional background, and skills—all directly into the template—you'll quickly generate a tailored letter that’s ready to impress, all while avoiding the typical writing hassles.

2. What Are Three Things You Should Include in a Cover Letter?

A cover letter must include skill contextualization, company-specific details, and a call to action: 

  1. Skill contextualization: Instead of just listing your skills, frame them within the context of the role you're applying for. For instance, if you have organizational skills and the role is for a business analyst, mention how you've used these skills to streamline data processes or improve project efficiencies in past roles.
  1. Company-specific details: Hiring managers appreciate when candidates show they've taken the time to research and understand the company. Mention the company name, and if possible, reference specific initiatives or company values that resonate with you. This indicates genuine interest and sets you apart from those sending generic letters.
  1. A call to action: Conclude with a strong closing that expresses your enthusiasm for the role and a desire to continue the conversation. This not only showcases your eagerness but also guides the hiring manager toward the next steps, whether that's scheduling an interview or further discussion.
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