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The main purpose of cover letters is to make the employer interested in learning more about you and to entice him/her to have a closer look at your resume and then call you in for an interview. As the first thing being looked at by the employer, cover letters act as an introduction to you and to your skill sets. Cover letters have the power to make or break your whole job application. A cover letter that clearly highlights your skill sets, abilities and talents and effectively illustrates the benefits that you will provide the employer with can give you a huge competitive edge over other candidates that are applying for the same job.
It is important to note that there are no specific rules for writing a successful cover letter. The specific format of your cover letter should mainly depend on the job and the company that you are applying for. For example, if you are applying for a job that requires creativity you might want to avoid the traditional methods of writing cover letters and instead send the employer a link to a cover letter and resume that contain animations.
The following rules are general guidelines to be followed in most cases:

- Should be in business letter format.
- Has to be tailored to the specific position and company. Do not use a generic cover letter for all the jobs that you apply on.
- Try to address the cover letter to the specific person that will be reading it (you can call the company to enquire about the name of the person). If you don't know the name of the person then address the letter to Sir/Madam
- Should not match exactly what is written in your resume. Remember that the main purpose for the cover letter is to make the employer take a closer look at your resume.
- Should not be more than 3 or 4 paragraphs (Keep in mind that the employer is reviewing a large number of applications, so be clear and concise).
- Should be as personal as you can make it without loosing professionalism.
- SHOULD NOT contain any spelling or grammatical errors. This will cause the employer to disregard you application before looking at it.

Generally your cover letter should be composed of the following:

- First Paragraph: This is the introduction paragraph. In this paragraph you should state the specific position that you are applying for, how did you find out about it, your interest in the company and give a brief synopsis of yourself.

- Second (and Third) Paragraphs: This is the body of your cover letter. Here is where you highlight your qualifications, experience and personal traits and how it directly relates to the job position. You should use tailored, concrete and specific examples of past accomplishments and skills.

- Forth (Closing) Paragraph: Here you should reiterate your interest in the job and confirm to the employer that you are the ideal candidate for the job, thank the employer for taking the time to look over your application and specifically request an interview to further illustrate your abilities.

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