Cover Letter vs Motivation Letter vs a Letter of Interest: What is the Difference?
Those applying for a job understand that a resume cannot provide all information about their skills, experience, and achievements. At the same time, it is unnecessary to include every last detail about yourself in a resume. The point is that a resume, as well as other documents the job seekers have to prepare, serves a clearly determined purpose. It has to succinctly describe your professional experience and abilities.
Apart from a resume, job seekers have to submit other documents such as a CV. Let us examine the issue of a cover letter vs a letter of interest. At first, try to respond to the question “Why do job seekers have to prepare the mentioned documents?”
What Is a Cover Letter?
It is essential to write a CV when applying for a job. The purpose of this document is to provide a potential employer with detailed information about the candidates, i.e. their skills, achievements, and career aspirations. In other words, a cover letter is a useful means of grabbing an employer’s attention.
When creating a CV, you are to provide such data as your name, address, and telephone. Additionally, you need to indicate the name of the HR manager. It would be good if you knew the name of a person you are writing. If not, just start your letter with a common greeting, i.e. “Dear Sir/Madam.” At the beginning of your piece of writing, clearly state where you have found the job vacancy and why it has caught your interest. After that, explain why you consider your candidacy the most appropriate for the job position you are applying. Here, you should present your work experience and give sound reasons for being helpful in expanding a specific business. When producing your CV, you may combine the data about your professional experience with that about your personal qualities. It is worth keeping in mind that HRs are looking for enthusiastic and skilled specialists with positive and negative sides (if it can be said so) and not robots. When ending your CV, remember to create a proper closing statement. Bear in mind that it is important to thank the recruiter for spending their time browsing your CV and ask for the job interview. Do not forget to leave your contacts so that the HR managers could get in touch with you.
A properly created CV should clearly highlight your benefits over other candidates. Be honest and strive mightily to show the recruiters that you are entirely focused on getting the job you are applying for.
What Is a Motivation Letter?
The difference between a cover letter and motivation letter is that the latter is used for being accepted to an educational establishment, academic program or a non-profit organization as a volunteer. It can be also used by the students or graduates who do not have any work experience and accomplishments to boast of but still desire to get the job position they are applying for.
Taking into account the name of the letter, i.e. the motivation one, it becomes clear that you are supposed to talk about the reasons for which you have decided to apply for a specific position. If you desire to enroll on a particular educational program, state why you find it worthy and interesting. If it goes about the position of a volunteer in a non-profit entity, provide data about your previous experience in the volunteerism or your deep desire to help people surrounding you.
Those applying for a job often face the issue of choosing between a motivation letter and the cover one. Which one to write? It is apparent that both documents are focused on convincing readers, i.e. hiring managers, that you are the most appropriate applicant among those applying for the same job position. Still, do keep in mind that a CV lets potential employers find out more about you than a motivation letter.
What Is a Letter of Interest?
We understand that you may have not heard about this kind of letter. The chief goal of a letter of interest is to let HR managers understand that you are willing to work for a specific corporation. It is obvious that when searching for a job, you may have a list highlighting the companies which you would like to work for but there are just no vacant positions. Under the condition, a letter of interest is what you should write. You should browse the Internet to find the website of the company you crave to work for and then look for the email address which you can send your letter of interest to. The chances that you will be responded are very high. Sometimes, the organizations do have unfilled vacancies but they are not published yet. In order to produce such a letter in the right manner, you should:
- Provide data about the job position you want to occupy
- List your skills
- Describe your work experience
- Explain why you consider yourself suitable for the job
Motivation Letter vs a Cover Letter: Is There any Difference?
Many people cannot distinguish between a motivation letter and the cover one. Some of them use these terms interchangeably. Nevertheless, these two documents do differ from each other. Thus, let us highlight the features intrinsic to each of the letters:
How to identify a cover letter?
- Kind of document: obligatory
- Situation: applying for a position
- Function: persuade the HRs to read the sent resume
- Information provided: abilities, professional experience, education, achievements
- Pertinence of content: relating to a job position
- Length: half a page
How to determine a motivation letter?
- Kind of document: optional
- Situation: applying to an educational establishment, internship
- Function: uncover applicant’s motivation and ambitions
- Information provided: qualifications, skills, talents, accomplishments, problems
- Pertinence of content: the data that are both relevant and irrelevant to the job position
- Length: one page
It should be admitted that both types of letters are very useful for advertising yourself as the best candidate for a specific job position.
Cover Letter vs a Letter of Interest
Is there any difference between a letter of interest and a cover letter? It can be firmly stated that the difference between a cover letter and a letter of interest does exist. When creating a CV, you have to explain in detail why you consider yourself a good candidate for the applied position. As to the letter of interest, it does not require you to go into detail. You just need to generally explain why the company you are applying to will benefit by hiring you.
What Data should a Letter of Interest Provide?
Contact person. Try to identify the one in the corporation, which you desire to work for, who you could send a letter to, e.g. an executive of a specific department. Determine whether you have any acquaintances in the company, e.g. via LinkedIn, or your family, friends, etc. If there is anyone in the organization whom you know, send your letter to them directly. You may request that person to refer you to the HR manager.
What information to include in your letter. Your document should clearly highlight your interest in the company you are applying for and explain how your qualification and experience can be helpful for the company. Your letter has to be focused on your strong points. It has to present your candidacy to the employer attractively.
Conclusion. In this part, you need to state that you would like to arrange a meeting with your potential employer to talk about career opportunities in detail.
Indicate your contacts. In the concluding section of your letter, you should also explain how you can be reached in case the recruiters are interested in your personality. Bear in mind that the easier you can be contacted, the better.
Make certain your document is succinct and thorough. If you want the HRs to understand everything quickly and properly, you have to make your letter comprehensible.
Below, there are also useful hints on creating a letter of interest. Have a look at them before beginning producing your letter.
Helpful Advice to Consider
Concerning the issue of a letter of interest vs a cover letter, it should be stated that though there is some difference between these documents, preparing both takes some time. Be ready to rewrite your letter a few times to make it suitable for a specific position. Make certain that your piece of writing satisfies the demands of the company you are applying.
Ensure that your letter is impeccable in all aspects. It should not contain any errors, misprints, etc. It has to be structured coherently and formatted appropriately. It is understandable that your CV or any other kind of letter which you send to your potential employer will create the first impression of you. Therefore, it has to be constructed and arranged appropriately.
Be honest. If you state that you have specific skills or experience, you should have them. The companies or educational establishments you are applying may check whether you have the indicated degrees, expertise, qualifications, etc. They may even talk to the people whom you provide as referees.
Avoid providing your personal data in both a letter of interest and a cover one. Such details as age, marital status, your favorite activities and alike should not be presented in the mentioned types of letters.
In order to make sure that the application process will go smoothly, it is worth examining the guidelines for composing the discussed letters carefully. Do not neglect any of the provided instructions! This is specifically important if you have to submit your letter online. Why? The thing is that online application process does not leave any room for corrections (once the “Submit” button is pressed). If in the process of online application you are asked to write several sentences explaining why you are perfect candidate for a specific job, consider you are creating a letter of interest.
Proofread your piece of writing. This stage should not be skipped! It is useful to ask someone to take a look at your letter with fresh eyes. Do bear in mind that the first impression matters!
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When composing your letter, make certain that the reasons for which you are writing it are clear. Merely stating that you are interested in a specific company and its activity is not enough. You have to prove that your experience is relevant to the area the company operates in and you have the required recommendations. Finally, make sure to do your best in the job interview and the position you are interested in is yours.