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The demand for payroll accountants is expected to increase 6 percent by 2028, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. If you want to score a job in this growing industry, a stellar cover letter is important. Cover letters are an ideal way to highlight your attention to detail, accounting credentials and payroll experience. Review some payroll accountant cover letter examples and writing tips at Hloom, and input your personal details to make one your own impressive cover letter.
The most common sections you’ll see on a cover letter include:
Cover Letter Sections
Start off with your name, address, email and phone number plus any accounting credentials you can append to your name. Notice in this example that Kimberly only notes her location by city and state. Your street address is unnecessary.
Add a professional greeting that includes the name of the payroll, accounting or office manager — whoever is most likely to review your application and resume as the above example did with Lisa Crowley. It’s ideal that you uncover the name of the hiring manager, by researching the company. If you cannot find a name, addressing it to “Dear Hiring Manager” will suffice.
Begin by mentioning the job posting and where you saw it. Include a short paragraph that summarizes the most important credential, skill or experience that makes you the best payroll accounting pro for this position; in this case, you see how Kimberly mentions her attention to detail and thorough knowledge of tax law as being assets to the company.
In this middle paragraph, choose items and skills from your resume, such as your education/certifications or knowledge of payroll systems, to expound here. Notice how Kimberly discusses how her observation and fiscal strategy found a way to cut over $10,000 on payroll expenditures.
Conclude your letter with gratitude for the reviewer’s time and something that helps you stand out, such as a tie to the organization or hiring professional when possible. Also, it’s important to make an effort to establish future communications as Kimberly does here when she expresses, “I look forward to hearing from you, at your earliest convenience.”
The signature should be formal. “Very Respectfully” or “Best Regards” are good ways to close, followed by your name.
This template is perfect if you’re seeking a bold visual statement, and also demonstrates that you are as up-to-date as your potential employer.
With its striking fonts and vivid coloring, this cover letter template helps you make a strong impression with hiring managers.
For job seekers who want to show off strong qualifications and experience without distracting bells and whistles, this clean cover letter example fits the bill.
The classic cover letter template is a good choice for job candidates with minimal experience who want to project a professional image.
This sharp layout places emphasis on job experience and major achievements, highlighting your abilities as a top-level manager.
This cover letter example is easily adaptable across many professions, allowing you to detail your experience, leadership skills, and technical expertise.
This clean template emphasizes your progressive, up-to-date experience and achievements -- the qualities that pioneering, cutting-edge companies seek.
This solid template lets you get to the point with your credentials, and why you are a good fit for the job.
When you need to get all the important details about your capabilities across without wasting space, use this compact, well-organized template.
As mentioned, the outlook for accountant jobs in general is expected to grow. Amid a market that’s increasingly complex and regulated, professional payroll specialists are likely to find plentiful job openings. But to even land an interview for these open positions, you have to impress the hiring manager with your cover letter and resume, and stand out from the pack of applicants.
One way to help get a hiring manager’s attention is to include action verbs in both your resume and cover letter. Common verbs for payroll accounting positions might include some of those listed below. Use these verbs in a narrative about your experience and skills to catch the eye of hiring managers.
Reconcile: You might reference how you reconcile the number of employee work hours logged with the amount of pay each employee received.
Enter: Based on what’s asked for in the job ad, you might write about your high level of accuracy when entering financial data.
Audit: Tell the hiring manager about your experience with handling both internal and external audits.
Manage: If you were responsible for managing other accountants or payroll workers, you’ll want to mention this in your cover letter.
Review: Elaborate on your talent for reviewing financial records, highlighting examples that are relevant to the new position.
Making sure that you have the right job-specific keywords is important to ensure applicant tracking systems (ATS) pass your resume on to a real person. ATS are software that some companies use to organize and manage large numbers of resumes. One way companies reduce the burden of looking through hundreds (or thousands) or resumes is by programming the systems to pass through only resumes that include certain keywords. These systems can stop as many as 75 percent of resumes from making it through in some cases. So, it’s essential that you echo the keywords present in the job posting in your letter.
For a payroll accountant, incorporating the right keywords into your cover letter might look something like this:
“Managed biweekly and monthly payroll processing and distribution for over 2,600 employees while overseeing system audits, resolving staff inquiries, and keeping current with tax code. Played a critical role in reducing overall company payroll expenses 18 percent by spearheading a campaign to encourage employees to go paperless for direct deposit reports.”Build a Cover Letter
It’s important to spend some time making certain your cover letter is in line with your resume by choosing specific aspects of your resume and expanding on them in your letter. In your payroll accountant cover letter sample, replace the information that’s not relevant to you with narratives that highlight the best parts of your resume.