Anatomy of a Cover Letter

After your CV your motivation letter to a company is the most important aspect of applying to a company. Here are some tips for a successful motivation letter:

  • Opening Paragraph: Clearly state the reason you are writing your letter. Try to think of an argument already on what made you decide to apply. For instance, ‘Having the chance to visit [company name] during an in-house day will allow me to better understand the playing field I want to enter after my studies.’ 
  • Continue by clearly explaining what makes you a good candidate for the organisation or how you will make use of the opportunity to join the in-house day. Rather than just saying ‘I have good communication skills’ highlight a situation where you put those skills to practice. Give brief examples to ‘prove’ these qualities. 
  • Also motivate what makes this organisation interesting to you. Go beyond the slogan of the company. Do not simply say ‘because you are the largest organisation’. Rather say what makes visiting the largest organisation interesting to you.
  • Closing: Be confident without sounding arrogant. Try to have a “call to action” prompting the reader to reply to your letter positively. At the same time do not make it seem as though you already assume, they will hire you.

In short, use your motivation letter to really make the match between your background, motivation and the organisation.

More tips? Check the Career Toolkit of TU Delft Career Centre