Insights From DVA Technology

Hiring and career news and advice from our experts.

Remove These Cover Letter Words and Phrases Immediately

cover letterThe words and phrases you choose for your cover letter impact whether you are contacted for an interview. This affects your odds of receiving a job offer.

Because you work hard in your IT career, you need your cover letter to reflect that. Otherwise, you may lose out on landing your dream job.

Discover some words and phrases to avoid using in your cover letter when applying for IT roles.


You might be a “good QA tester” or “good at data warehousing.” However, there is a range of more powerful adjectives you can choose from.

You can replace “good” with “skilled,” talented,” or experienced. Other examples include “accomplished,” “successful,” and “seasoned.” Ensure the alternative accurately represents your skill or experience level.

“To Whom It May Concern”

Addressing a cover letter in an impersonal manner shows the hiring manager you are not interested in the role. It demonstrates you did not put in the effort to determine the name of the hiring manager, an HR representative, or the department you want to work in.

To resolve this issue, address your cover letter to the hiring manager. If they are not listed, use the name of your potential boss, the head of the department, or the name of the department.

“As Shown by My Resume…”

You do not need to restate the information included in your resume. This wastes the hiring manager’s time.

For instance, rather than say, “As shown by my resume, I have been working as a system administrator for the past 4 years,” you can say, “I have been working as a system administrator for the past 4 years.” This projects confidence in your abilities.

“I think…”

“I think,” “I feel,” and “I believe” signal insecurity. The hiring manager likely will put aside your cover letter and focus on other candidates.

For instance, replace “I think my communication skills would make me a strong project manager” with “I am confident my communication skills would make me a strong project manager.”

“This Role Would Help Me Because…”

The hiring manager is not interested in how the position would benefit you. They care about what you would bring to the role to benefit the company.

Instead, focus on how you would help the business. One of the best ways is to match your abilities with the organization’s needs to attain desirable results.

For instance, assume you are applying for a front-end engineering position. You might state, “My 5 years of experience with open-source JavaScript, HTML5, and CSS3, along with my passion for creating responsive web applications, would let me develop attractive, maintainable, functional front-end code. Ultimately, this would make your company’s products even more user-friendly.”

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