WHAT IS A COVER LETTER?
Think of a cover letter as the front page of your CV. It acts as an introduction to your CV and gives you the chance to state why you are the best candidate for the role. Here you can highlight any key skills or relevant experience that you want to stand out to the employer. Ultimately you want this to prompt the employer to read on and find out more.
FORMATTING A COVER LETTER
Formatting is key, this will be the first thing the employer will see from you. It needs to be concise and direct using a professional font and clear paragraphs. Make sure the length doesn’t exceed an A4 page, about half a page is just right.
ADDRESSING A COVER LETTER
- Include the date
- The contact name
- The job title
- The organisation name
- The address and postcode
- Address the person dealing with the application, this should be in the job specification, if you can't find a name Dear Sir/Madam is sufficient
- This should tell the employer what you are applying for, when and where you saw it advertised e.g. college newsletter, university website
- State what documents are attached for their consideration e.g. CV, application form
- Research the company, the role and the industry. Demonstrate your interests in the company and your motivation.
- Here you can show that you have the skills/qualifications that the employer needs, remember to be specific and relate it to the job specification, using their language.
- Here you can detail any relevant qualifications and what you are involved in currently e.g. I am currently undertaking a business administrator apprenticeship
- Highlight that you have the skills and qualities in the job specification, this can be supported with any relevant volunteering, projects or achievements
- Any additional skills or achievements that you believe will make you stand out to the employer with an example
- Make sure that throughout you are employing their language, adapt this from the job specification or the company website.
- Thank them for considering, give a form of contact such as a professional email address or a mobile number and welcome a phone call for further discussion (the first step in the recruitment process may begin with a phone call interview in some companies).
- Yours sincerely (if name is known)
- Yours faithfully ( if addressing Sir/Madam)