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Writing a Cover Letter Post Layoff – Tips & Samples

A cover letter is an essential component of your job application, whether you love them or despise them. You should always include a strong, unique cover letter, unless the job description clearly instructs you not to. This provides you with a  chance to stand out from the crowd and create a good first impression on a prospective employer. Writing a cover letter that discusses your layoff when you’re looking for a new job after being laid off may seem like a good idea. You’ve probably heard that employers are more likely to hire someone who is currently employed than someone who is unemployed. But it is always advisable to stray away from such talks that are untrue and might demotivate you. Through this article, we will look over some cover letter sample and tips that will make you stand above the rest.

You should talk about your job loss or layoff because, given the state of the job market today, it’s safe to assume that you are not the only one who has experienced it. You can find yourself in an advantage over the competition by effectively addressing your circumstance in your cover letter. In this post, we’ll go over how to properly address a layoff in your cover letter and provide some advice on the same, helping you draft the ideal cover letter sample.

Related Article:
How to Answer Why You Left the Job if You Were Laid Off
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Why Should You Address Your Layoff?

You could believe that being laid off is unimportant to include in your cover letter. Especially when, despite the fact that you lost your job, you weren’t to blame. The fact that you lost your last job shouldn’t matter if you have the necessary qualifications, experience, and a solid resume. One of your strongest tools in the job search after being laid off is your cover letter. Including information about your layoff in your cover letter can provide you the chance to explain the situation to a future employer. For this, refer to some cover letter formats and a cover letter sample to help you navigate. Consider a situation where a recruiting manager has a pool of qualified applicants. Questionable resumes may cause the company to exclude a candidate from consideration. Clarity upfront keeps them informed of your circumstance and therefore keeps you in the running.

You can also make a strong impression on hiring managers by including information about your layoff in the first section of your cover letter. A potential employer may be able to tell that you have faith in your abilities regardless of the difficult circumstances if you mention your layoff in your cover letter.

Related Article: Steps to Take After Layoffs or Being Let Go

How to Address Your Layoff in a Cover Letter?

A cover letter can be a useful tool for addressing the specifics of a layoff because it elaborates on your resume’s key points and serves as an introduction to the hiring manager. 

After being laid off, you might find yourself looking for work again while being unsure of how to mention your layoff in your application documents. Your cover letter is a good place to mention a layoff to prospective employers. You must be aware of the appropriate language to use to successfully describe your work situation when addressing your layoff in a cover letter. For that you could refer to a cover letter sample. Here are some pointers for creating a cover letter following a layoff.

1. Present it favorably 

Layoffs are difficult, and businesses want to know that the candidates they choose can modify a difficult situation or frame it positively. The most crucial thing you can do in your cover letter while discussing a layoff is to stay upbeat. Try to start by imagining any potential advantages of being laid off, such as the chance to learn new skills or investigate a different market niche.

2. Carefully choose your language

Consider the phrases you might use in your cover letter to describe your layoff. Consider using terms like “challenges” and “opportunities” instead of words like “issues.” Your potential employer will be reassured by this that you are prepared to make the most of trying circumstances. You can also show your potential employer that you are prepared to consider the future and how you can assist their firm by using phrases like “building,” “development,” and “growing.”

3. Prepare the cover letter 

Try to maintain a tranquil and upbeat attitude as you prepare your cover letter. By adopting this attitude, you can make sure that your writing is as uncomplicated. Any stress you might have when writing might be reduced by keeping in mind that you can always go back and edit a first draft. Any portions that you provide concerning getting laid off should be connected to the next using transitional words and phrases. Your work will remain orderly and concise as a result.

4. Proofread

Reread your writing to make sure your words have the desired effect once you have prepared a draft of your cover letter that addresses your layoff. Setting your draft away and coming back to it later, if you have time, is a smart approach to accomplish this. This might assist you in determining which words and phrases you would need to rework in a more encouraging manner.

Related Article: How To Write a Resignation Letter – Tips & Samples

Tips for Addressing Layoffs in your Cover Letter

In order to answer any queries the hiring manager could have, it is preferable to fill in the blanks in your cover letter with the appropriate and relevant information. For this, you can refer to a cover letter sample. By doing this, you will prevent anyone from drawing the wrong conclusions by being up forward about your layoff. Giving the responses before they even pose the question can aid in getting your CV added to the pile of shortlisted candidates.

1. Stop feeling guilty 

You could be tempted to use the cover letter as an opportunity to discuss how unjust your most recent layoff was and how you require employment for your financial planning. But, no matter how kind the hiring manager is, guilt-tripping will not be effective. Instead of focusing on what you want or need the company to accomplish for you, emphasize in your cover letter what you can do for them.

2. Make no excuses 

Making explanations, apologizing excessively, or over-explaining will not present you in the best light. Even worse, it can give the impression that you’re concealing anything from the hiring manager and that the situation was worse than it actually was. Keep the problem from attracting more attention than is necessary.

3. Avoid Placing Blame

You might still feel angry over being laid off. While it’s okay to be sad about losing your job, you shouldn’t express these feelings in your cover letter. Layoffs are a common occurrence in the workplace, and most hiring managers, if not all, will recognize that losing a job as a result of a layoff was beyond your control, particularly during a pandemic. 

You only need to provide a brief, objective statement about the reasons behind your layoff. Examples could be: 

  • A corporate restructure led to the elimination of my position. 
  • My position and others that were duplicated were eliminated after the company was acquired. 
  • The epidemic compelled the business to reduce expenses, which included layoffs.

4. Discuss the positives 

Using a positive and optimistic tone, cover letters should sell you and your qualifications to a potential employer. After briefly describing your layoff, discuss how you’ve been keeping your professional skills current. 

You can also use your layoff to your advantage by describing how your professional background will help them. Mention your strong skill sets, the value it provided to your previous employer, and the advantages it will provide to your new employer. When possible, include data to support your claims.

5. Avoid unnecessary information

Never summarize your complete professional career, set of talents, or life experience in a cover letter. Those are the purposes of the CV and the interview. Your cover letter should provide a succinct explanation of your qualifications for the position and why you believe the employer should give you a chance to interview. 

Brief is the operative word here. The standard length of a cover letter is one page. Start modifying your resume if it turns out to be more than a page and see what you can cut or reduce.

Related Article: Getting Laid Off: What to Do & What it Means?


The first step toward your future job is writing a cover letter. While it is vital to highlight the past in your cover letter, such as your layoff, be careful not to linger on it. Instead, discuss your future and how your skills may benefit your possible company in the cover letter. We have a ton of ideas to help you recover after being laid off. Consider contacting career advisors for additional customized guidance based on your particular circumstances, or refer to a cover letter sample. To make a lasting impression on the recruiting manager, use the closing paragraph of your cover letter. Remind the reader of your best traits and the advantages you may provide to their business.

Related Article: Preparing For a Layoff – Steps To Take


1. What should someone who was laid off include on their resume or cover letter? 
If you were laid off, you don’t necessarily have to include it on your resume or cover letter, but you can discuss it if it comes up during the interview. You also don’t have to hide the fact that you had a brief work gap afterward. Never make anything up or lie on a resume.

2. Which of the following should never be done in a cover letter? 
There are a few things you shouldn’t put on your cover letter, some of them include: 

  • Any spelling or grammar mistakes
  • The wrong company name or contact person’s name
  • Anything that isn’t true 
  • Lengthy paragraphs
  • Your salary requirements or expectations
  • Critical remarks about a current or former employer
  • Information unrelated to the job

3. What are the top things a cover letter ought to contain? 
Important sections of a cover letter include: 

  • Your Details
  • Date
  • Contact Person’s Details (name, position, and address) 
  • Salutation
  • Opening/First Paragraph
  • Middle Section 
  • Second Middle Section
  • Contact Details 
  • Conclusion
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