In our competitive climate, it is imperative that you take every possible measure to ensure your application gets noticed. When you send your CV in response to a job advert or as a general enquiry about job opportunities, it is highly recommended that you also include a covering note or letter.
The cover letter is a vital component of your job application. The cover letter introduces you to the prospective employer and should encourage the recipient to read your CV. If the letter does not outline why the recruiter should take the time to find out more about you, your application may be overlooked. Make it clear that you really want the job to ensure you stand out amongst many equally qualified candidates. Your cover letter is the perfect chance to demonstrate your enthusiasm – make it count!
A good cover letter will contain the following elements:
- A brief introduction outlining which job vacancy you are applying for (or type of job role you are looking for in general enquiries).
- Reasons why you would be a suitable candidate.
- Reasons why you want this particular job (or type of job).
- A closing sentence requesting the opportunity for an interview, as well as providing your telephone contact details.
- Keep the cover letter concise – never write more than one side of A4 paper (email notes should be kept shorter still).
- Remain formal and professional.
- Relate your skills to the specific job you are applying for.
- Use action words to make your experience sound most positive.
- Always check spelling and grammar thoroughly; spell checkers will not pick up on all errors!
- When including the cover letter as a separate document, write it as a formal letter with your name and address at the top.
- When emailing your cover letter and CV, ensure the subject line includes job title and reference number.