What is a Motivation Letter?
A motivation letter, also called a letter of motivation, is a short one-page-long letter that explains why you’re the perfect candidate for the position by using examples of your interests and achievements. It’s usually attached to your resume when applying for a job.
A motivation letter can also be used for other situations outside the job world such as applying for an educational program at a college or university. Due to its nature, a motivation letter is perfect for candidates applying for an internship, volunteering role, or for candidates who have little or no job experience
What is a Cover Letter?
A cover letter is a one-page document that you submit with your resume to express your interest in a job/program. The purpose of a cover letter is to introduce yourself to an employer and provide a brief overview of your work history, professional skills, and an explanation why you’re the best fit for that job/program.
While your CV/resume focuses on your qualifications and achievements, your cover letter expands on those achievements, showcases your personality, and explains why you’d be a good fit for the company.
How do You Know it’s a Motivation Letter?
• Type of document: optional
• Situation: applying for a university, internship, volunteering
• Function: describe the applicant’s motivation, inspiration and reasons
• Content: skills, qualifications, achievements, struggles and challenges
• Relevance of content: both relevant and non-relevant to the position
• Length: approximately one page
How do You Know it’s a Cover Letter?
• Type of document: compulsory
• Situation: applying for a job
• Function: convince the hiring manager to read the resume
• Content: skills, work experience, education and accomplishments
• Relevance of content: only job-relevant
• Length: half a page
Motivational Letter vs Cover Letter
Often students get confused between a cover letter and a motivational letter, it is important to keep in mind that the purpose of a cover letter is to accentuate some specific information mentioned on your resume and align it with the job requirements as well as the company profile.
To put it simply, a cover letter is more of an introductory letter to your resume to the hiring authority whereas a motivational letter is mainly utilised as how your interests, motivations and aspirations match the academic program you want to study or a job profile you want to apply for. All the elite organizations are in search of individuals who would prove out to be an asset to the company.
Thus, it should deliver your intent and excitement using the key feature as your motivation. Every document a university or recruiter asks for serves a special purpose. Often than not, candidates are confused between the two such documents – Cover Letter and Motivation Letter.
A cover letter is a professional letter given to an employer/recruiter along with a resume or CV. Cover Letters are generally used by companies, employers and recruiters as opposed to motivation letters that are used by university admission offices, educational institutes and internships.
Both letters are intended to inform the recruiter or educational officer of why you are the perfect candidate and allow candidates to explain at length about their motivation, interests, hobbies, achievements and career/academic future.