If you’re applying to numerous jobs, writing unique cover letters for every position can be time consuming and frustrating. After all, it’s exhausting having to reiterate your qualifications over and over again.
That’s where a general cover letter comes in handy.
A general or generic cover letter is a letter that focuses broadly on your experience, and can be easily modified for any job that you apply for.
But the worst thing you can do is appear bland and unspecific. So we’re going to teach you how to craft the perfect general cover letter for no specific job that will save you time, but also ensure you impress the hiring manager.
In this article, you’ll find:
- A professional general cover letter template
- A completed general cover letter example
- Expert tips on how to write a general cover letter.
1. General Cover Letter Sample & Template
Here’s a professional generic cover letter template you can use for any job you apply to:
General Cover Letter Template
[Hiring Manager’s Name]
[City, State ZIP]
Dear [Mr./Ms./Mrs.] [Hiring Manager’s Surname],
I was excited to see your listing for the [Position Name] position at [Company Name] on [Website Name] recently. As a dynamic [Your Occupation] with [# Years] of professional experience doing [Primary Work Task] in order to drive results, I’m confident that I would be a valuable asset to your team.
Your job listing mentions a need for someone knowledgeable in [Area of Expertise], which is an area I have extensive experience in. I’m currently employed at [Current Company Name], where I’ve honed my skills doing [Relevant Tasks Performed]. While employed here, I have successfully raised our [Achievement] by [%] over the course of [Time Period], contributing substantially to the department’s annual goals.
I’m confident that my proven track record of excellent work ethic, unparalleled attention to detail, and knack for [Relevant Skill] will make me an immediate asset at [Company Name], and allow me to contribute to the team’s success.
I look forward to discussing the [Position Name] position and my qualifications with you in more detail. I’m available to talk at your soonest convenience. I’ll be in touch next week to follow up, just to make sure you’ve received my application.
Thank you so much for your time and consideration.
Completed General Cover Letter Example
Here’s a completed general cover letter example from a candidate applying to a digital marketing position:
81 Federal Ave.
New York, NY 10001
Dear Mr. Taylor,
I was excited to see your listing for the Lead Digital Marketing position at Westward Strategies on Indeed.com recently. As a dynamic email marketing specialist with over two years of professional experience executing market research, analyzing consumer data, and running A/B testing in order to drive successful marketing campaigns, I’m confident that I would be a valuable asset to the team at Westward.
Your job listing mentions a need for someone experienced in email segmentation and campaign development, both of which happen to be areas I have extensive experience in. I’m currently employed at Formosa Inc., where I’ve honed my skills by running numerous highly successful email marketing campaigns. While employed here, I spearheaded a digital promotion campaign for the company’s new line of sandals that successfully raised our total online engagement by an impressive 13% over the course of six months, contributing substantially to the department’s annual goals.
I’m confident that my proven track record of excellent work ethic, unparalleled attention to detail, and knack for executing high-performing email marketing campaigns will make me an immediate asset at Westward Strategies, and allow me to contribute to the team’s success.
I look forward to discussing the Lead Digital Marketing position and my qualifications with you in more detail. I’m available to talk at your soonest convenience. I’ll be in touch next week to follow up, just to make sure you’ve received my application.
Thank you so much for your time and consideration.
2. How to Write a General Cover Letter
Unsure what to include in your generic cover letter? Don’t worry — we’ll show you how to write a professional generic cover letter for no specific job that really works.
#1. Address Your Cover Letter Properly
You only get one chance to make a great first impression with the hiring manager, so it’s critical that you address your cover letter properly.
Although you’re using a general cover letter, a generic and impersonal greeting could damage your chance of getting a call back.
Properly formatting the hiring manager’s contact details and using the correct salutation will show the hiring manager that you did your research, and are excited for the job opportunity.
Here are the steps you need to take when addressing a cover letter:
- List your contact details — including address, phone number, and email — and the company’s, as well as the current date.
- Find out the name of the hiring manager.
- If you can’t find their name, search on LinkedIn, check the company website, or try calling the office manager or receptionist and ask.
- If all else fails, there’s nothing wrong with starting your email with “Dear Hiring Manager,” but it should be your last choice.
As an example, here’s how one candidate properly addressed their cover letter:
#2. Match Your Cover Letter to Your Resume
All jobs — even if they’re within the same industry — will likely have different required qualifications, skills, and experience.
To increase your chances of success, you should adjust your cover letter according to the position you’re applying to.
An easy way to do this is to weave the skills or qualifications from the job posting into your generic cover letter.
Furthermore, It’s important that when you write your cover letter, you use a matching resume style.
Having a mismatched cover letter and resume looks unprofessional and can be jarring for the hiring manager. It’s a simple fix, but double checking that the style of your cover letter and resume match before you send them out will make your application look put-together and professional.
#3. Lead With a Strong Opening Paragraph
Hiring managers typically have to read hundreds of cover letters every day, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that they may skim through your cover letter. But if they read any part of it thoroughly, it’ll likely be the first paragraph of your cover letter. That’s why having a convincing introduction in your general cover letter is key to locking down an interview.
You introduction doesn’t need to be elaborate. Provide a little personal background, explain how you found the position, and indicate that you’re excited about the opportunity.
Here’s an example of a proper cover letter introduction:
#4. Highlight Your Soft Skills
Employers are always looking for candidates who have great interpersonal skills, are adaptable, creative, and collaborative — no matter what industry you work in.
That’s why soft skills are an excellent thing to add to a general cover letter. Regardless of the position, these traits are highly applicable and are sure to impress hiring managers.
Highlight a handful of your stronger soft skills, and your general cover letter will be ready to go for nearly any position.
#5. Tailor Your Generic Cover Letter
It might sound like it defeats the purpose of using a general cover letter, but you should customize your generic cover letter every time you send out an application. The fact is, employers can easily see through a nonspecific, bland general cover letter. In order to make a good impression, you need to do more than just swap out the company name and position.
The best way to do this is to section out parts of your general cover letter so that you can swap in information about the job you’re applying to. Hiring managers are on the look-out for information that demonstrates why you think their company is the best fit for you, so scan the job listing and add information that demonstrates that you’re a good fit for that job specifically.
The most important part of this is tailoring the experience that you highlight. Each company has specific needs, so it’s crucial that you identify what experience you have that they’re seeking.
Here’s how a sample applicant tailored their general cover letter for employment at a digital marketing company:
Additionally, an overly generic cover letter will lack the keywords and phrases certain employers are looking for, making it more likely to be eliminated by an Applicant Tracking System. That’s why tailoring your cover letter is so important to making sure your application gets in front of the hiring manager.
A quality cover letter can be the difference between nailing down your dream job, or waiting for a call back. If you’re applying to numerous positions, using a general cover letter is a great way to save you a lot of time and effort, but the key is to hit the right balance.
Too specific and you can end up spending hours writing cover letters for every job you apply to, but too generic and hiring managers will think you don’t care about the position.
By using our expertly designed general cover letter example and following our expert tips, you’ll have a strong generic cover letter you can modify and use for any job.
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