Here is a tip. People say cover letters are so important and honestly they are. They aren’t going to go away anytime soon. But the reality of it is most people just quickly skim the cover letter if they read it at all. Nonetheless, a great cover letter gives you the chance to stand out.
Cover letters can be tedious to make and because of that, most people say the same thing for each company. But the secret to a cover letter is being able to find specific information about the company you are applying for and talking about why that makes you interested in them.
If you have had conversations with employees at the firm this is a great place to start. Or try to research the values of the company or the things that set them apart. Lots of people in cover letters say “x company is the best in the world at x they have a great wealth management division.” Don’t be basic, and don’t tell a firm what they already know about themselves. Try to be unique, remember the HR person will be reading through hundreds of these applications.
Another useful strategy is to tie in an accomplishment of yours that aligns with the work of the company. For example, if you started an org at your school about investments talk about the process of starting and leading that. Do not just repeat what you say in your resume. A basic layout for a resume is as follows:
- Intro paragraph: few sentences saying you are applying and where you are from
- Paragraph on why you are interested in the company and industry
- Longest paragraph on why they should hire you. Don”t specifically tell them but demonstrate your ability and best skills through an effective story.
Lastly, one of the most important tips for cover letters and resumes is to not make ANY typos or small mistakes. This will instantly disqualify you, usually no matter what. They don’t want clients getting typos! Best of luck!