What is an email cover letter?
An email cover letter is a brief statement explaining why you’re sending your CV (aka your curriculum vitae) and how your experience qualifies you for the position.
The main difference between an email cover letter and a traditional cover letter is that there are two ways to send a cover letter via email:
- writing your entire cover letter in the body of your email
- adding the cover letter to the email as an attachment (alongside your attached CV) as a PDF
Two email cover letter examples
Unsure where to begin? You’re in the right place. These two visual examples of email cover letters will get you started:
1. Cover letter email sample (in the body text)
This is an example cover letter from a candidate applying for a production engineer position:
Dear Ms Andrews,
Please accept this letter as my application for the Production Engineer position. With a track record of resourcefulness and leadership, I’ve developed strategic initiatives that I believe will prove valuable to Chrix Technologies.
Working in this field for 9 years has given me the experience to carry out my duties diligently. I worked for Argon Industrial Services Limited for 3 years before joining KH Engineering Global Limited, which included leading:
- process improvement
- preventative maintenance
- ISO standards knowledge
- resource planning and optimisation
In addition to these technical skills, I have a solid educational foundation and a strong commitment to safety and efficiency. Kindly review my attached CV for additional details. I’d be grateful for the chance to speak with you regarding my qualifications.
Thank you for your consideration.
07423 542 785
2. Email cover letter example (as an attachment)
Here’s an example of a short cover letter email with CV and cover letter attachments:
Dear Ms Taylor,
Kindly find attached my CV and cover letter for the Content Writer position at Tennyson Writing Services.
Please let me know if you require any other information regarding my qualifications. Thank you for your consideration.
07435 847 234
How to write a cover letter for an email
Whether you’re writing a lengthy account of your achievements or a short cover letter, these are five tips to keep in mind before you send your email cover letter:
1. Use a professional email address
Providing the right email address is important when sending a cover letter, so use a clear, professional email address that combines your first and last name (such as email@example.com).
You can also use other variations if you can’t use your first and last name, such as:
- your initials or middle name (e.g., firstname.lastname@example.org)
- your name and job title (e.g., email@example.com)
- special characters such as an underscore (e.g., firstname.lastname@example.org) or a dash (email@example.com)
2. Use a clear subject line
A clear, informative subject line improves the chances that an employer will open your email.
So include your full name and job title for clarity, and ensure your subject line doesn’t exceed 60 characters so your text doesn’t get cut off.
Here are some examples of professional email subject lines:
- Danny Swells – Job Application for Mechanical Engineer Role
- Cally Lin – Applying for Twitter’s Project Manager Job Opportunity
- Lorissa Ritzwald – Interested in Graphic Design Role at UX Buzz
- Alex Singh – Applying for Logistics Manager Role at Pepsi
3. Follow instructions in the job description
Email cover letters can be sent in one of two ways: as part of the email body or as an attachment.
When sending your letter, follow the instructions outlined by the company. Not following instructions might cause recruiters to reject your application.
If there’s no formal requirement, then feel free to choose the email format that suits you. Here are the two ways to send an email cover letter:
Write a cover letter email directly in the body text
If you’re writing a cover letter email without an attachment, simply copy and paste your cover letter into the email.
Also, you can remove the employer’s contact information and the company address. Just start directly with your cover letter salutation by addressing your employer using ‘Dear Mr/Ms/Mx Contact Person’s Surname’.
Attach your email cover letter as a separate file
If you’re sending your cover letter as an email attachment, write a brief message in the body of the email to tell the potential employer you’ve attached your cover letter.
Keep your email message short and professional by introducing yourself and specifying the position you’re applying for.
You can also mention your professional work history, but keep it to 1–3 sentences. You can provide more information in your attached CV and cover letter.
4. Save your file correctly
To maintain the original appearance of your cover letter, save it as a PDF.
Change the file name to First Name-Last Name-Cover-Letter (for example, Brandon-Sullivan-Cover-Letter.pdf) to make it easier for the recruiter or employer to find your cover letter after they’ve downloaded it.
5. Send a test email to yourself
Send yourself a test email to ensure that your attachments are working properly.
Take this opportunity to check if you’re sending the correct file and to double-check your spelling, grammar, and cover letter formatting.
Email cover letter template (as body text)
If you’re writing your cover letter directly as an email, here’s a cover letter email template with clear instructions to use as a starting point:
Dear [Mr/Ms/Mx] [Contact Person’s Surname],
Briefly introduce yourself in the first paragraph by stating how you became aware of the job opening, presenting your professional work history, and explaining directly why you feel you’d be an ideal fit for the role.
Next, write 1–3 short body paragraphs that concisely expand on what you’ve introduced by emphasising your experience and key CV skills and relating them directly to the needs of the job.
- include a list of 3–4 bullet points if you want your top accomplishments to stand out
- ensure you quantify (add numbers to) these bullet points
To successfully close your cover letter, thank the contact person for taking the time to read your application letter and inform them if you’ve attached other documents (e.g., your CV) to the email. Invite them to contact you by mentioning how grateful you’d be to receive an interview.
Finally, end with ‘Yours sincerely’ if you know the name of the contact person and list your name and professional contact details (e.g., your phone number, a link to your portfolio).
[Your Name] [Your phone number]
Frequently asked questions about email cover letters
To help you write an impactful cover letter in an email, have a look at our frequently asked questions and answers on this topic:
- How do you start an email cover letter?
- How do you say your cover letter is attached to an email?
- Is an email acceptable on its own as a cover letter?
1. How do you start an email cover letter?
The standard way to start an email cover letter is to address your target employer by name.
For instance, ‘Dear [Mr/Ms/Mx] [Contact Person’s Last Name],’ is a polite and commonly used greeting that starts your email cover letter professionally.
Next, write a compelling cover letter opening line that states the specific role you’re applying for and how you came across the opportunity. Doing so personalises your letter and shows you have a genuine interest in the role.
For example, you could start your cover letter email with a sentence like:
‘I’m writing to express my strong interest in the [Job title] role that I came across on [Company’s website/job board].’
2. How do you say your cover letter is attached to an email?
If you’re sending your cover letter as a separate attachment, mention it in the main body of your email.
Referring directly to the attached file helps your target employer understand they should look for an attachment and lets them know exactly what they should expect.
Here are some ways to say that your cover letter is attached to an email:
- Please find attached my cover letter for the [Job title] role.
- Attached to this email, you’ll find my cover letter for the [Job title] role.
- I’ve included my cover letter for the [Job title] role as an attachment to this email.
- In accordance with your application requirements, I’ve attached my cover letter for the [Job title] opportunity.
- I’ve attached my cover letter for the [Job title] opportunity for your review.
And to be even clearer, state the file format of the attachment, for example: ‘My cover letter is attached in PDF format’. Specifying your cover letter’s file format helps to ensure that it can be easily opened and read by your target employer.
Finally, make sure to re-check if your attachment is in your email before sending it to avoid any potentially embarrassing moments!
3. Is an email acceptable on its own as a cover letter?
Yes, an email on its own can be considered a cover letter if it’s well-written and provides all the necessary information.
However, most employers prefer their applicants to attach a separate, formal cover letter to the email as it shows they took the time to create a personalised letter of application for the role.
We recommend double-checking the job description or the company’s instructions before deciding how to submit your cover letter.
Additional FAQs about cover letter writing
Want more cover letter writing resources? Here are some other frequently asked questions about cover letters to help make your job application process easier: