Effective Cover Letter Template

By HRNasty

effective cover letter template

                  Effective cover letter template

Below is a effective cover letter template referenced from this blog post.  This effective cover letter template gives the recruiter exactly what they are looking for and no more.  My additional notes in blue.


HR Nasty
100 Nasty Drive
Portland Oregon 98102

June 27, 2014

Johnny Hiring Manager / Johnny Recruiter

Manager of Retail
Acme Clothing Company
101 Acme Drive
Springfield Oregon  98101

Dear Johnny Recruiter,

It is with enthusiasm that I am applying for the retail position job at Acme Clothing.  I grew up wearing Acme shirts and have always found the fit and fabric to be outstanding. (1)  

Your job description for the Regional Sales Manager mentioned you were looking for the following:

  • 3 years of industry sales and retail experience
  • 2 years as a buyer for men’s suits
  • 2 years as a retail store manager 

As you can see from my resume, I have: (2)   

  • 3 years working sales and retail experience working at Levis Strauss
  • 3 years as a buyer for men’s suits at Nordstrom
  • 2 years as a retail store manager at the Gap


I feel that my qualifications are a solid (3) match for your (4) position and would look forward to talking to you about how I can help you hit your sales goals.






1.  (Keeping this opening really short and simple, the meat is the bullets below)

2.  (In the above bullets, even though I may have 10 years of experience, I am giving the recruiter what they want and just a hair more experience.  I am trying to be the perfect match. If we state that we have 10 years of experience in each category we will be categorized as “over qualified”) 

3.  (avoid the word “perfect”) 

4. (the word “your” lets the hiring manager know they are in control)

See you at the after party,


nasty: an unreal maneuver of incredible technique, something that is ridiculously good, tricky and manipulative but with a result that can’t help but be admired, a phrase used to describe someone that is good at something. “He has a nasty forkball”.

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  • Troy DeForest

    This is great stuff. However, I have retired from the military and am now in the career change process. I have taken training for the field I am going into and have worked for a company in that field but now I have moved to a different location. How would you suggest a person do a cover letter like this when they have only a fraction of the experience that the employer is asking for?

    • Troy,
      Thanks for checking out the site. I realize you have moved into the new location and may not have a network established yet, but networking is THE best way to get yourself in an interview loop. If you have a friend of a friend or can use LinkedIn for an introduction through a 2nd or 3rd connection, that is where I would start. If you can just connect to someone that works in the company (it doesn’t matter if they work in an un related department), someone who did business with the company OR, someone who used to work there, get connected to the company and ask for an informational interview over lunch or coffee.
      Does this help at all? HRN

    • Hey there, I am really sorry, I missed this comment somehow and just stumbled across it. I don’t feel like I have enough information to go on to give you an adequate answer. Do me a favor and check out this post and lets see what we can come up with. http://hrnasty.com/under-qualified/ . This method does require a different resume and cover letter for each position applied for (as ANY job search requires, but it really means we need to tailor or resume for the specific position) . Hope this helps, HRN