What is an Accounting Cover Letter?

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An accounting cover letter is the type of cover letter you write when searching for an accounting or finance related job. It is the document that introduces you to the prospective employer, while also introducing the prospective employer to the documents you are likely to have attached to the application (resumes, professional certificates, testimonials from former employers and so on). The properly written accounting cover letter should, as its most basic function, attract the employer enough for them to look at the attached documents and ultimately invite the position-seeker for an interview that should culminate in the position-seeker being hired for whatever accounting position is at hand.

The idea of writing an accounting letter is very much in line with the concept of tailor-making cover letters and resumes in view of the specific positions being sought, which is very much considered the best practice in today’s world. Gone are the times when all a job-seeker had to do was to scribble an application note, and use it in applying for all positions they came across (only changing the employer addresses), because in today’s competitive labor market-place, such a ‘copy and paste’ or ‘one size fits all’ approach to job application documents simply can’t win.

An accounting letter has a number of features.

Like all formal letters, for instance, the accounting cover letter bears the addresses of both the job seeker and the employer. The job-seeker’s address comes first, with the employers address coming second. The job-seeker’s address, which comes first, might – depending on whether the job-seeker wants to appear ‘modern’ or ‘conservative’ – be left aligned (which is the modern approach) with the rest of the document, or pushed to the right of the document, which is the conservative approach. In all cases, though, the prospective employer’s address (starting with the officer to whom the application is written) has to be to the right of the document, typically a single vertical space after the position-seeker’s address and date.

Talking of the date, like all official correspondence, the accounting cover letter has to bear a date; and although the importance of this is obvious, the number of accounting position seeker’s who actually ignore the date is amazing. Most of the letters without dates, of course, typically end up in the trash bin.
An accounting cover letter has to have a ‘ref:’ line – referring to the position one is applying to, as it was referred to in the advertisement, in case one is responding to an ad.

An accounting cover letter typically starts with reference to why the position-seeker is submitting it (like whether they are applying response to a newspaper ad or what).

The accounting letter is not supposed to just repeat the information on the resume (in case it comes attached to one), but rather to add value to that resume information.

Ideally, the accounting letter should concisely – yet convincingly – show the employer why they should hire the position seeker submitting it, and not another job candidate; because in all likelihood, there will be many people seeking the same position, and in the employer’s view, they are all competing service providers; from whom the employer is to make a choice.

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