In my experience job seekers spend hours perfecting and crafting their CV. They then, rattle off a covering letter… and wonder why they don’t seem to be getting many interviews.
The sole purpose of a covering letter is to get your CV read. Get your first impression wrong and your CV (which you have spent many hours perfecting) wouldn’t be read, and your application will be put in the rejection pile. As the saying goes, you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.
You should always have a covering letter with your CV – even if you are submitting your application via an internet job site. The covering letter gives your CV some context, adds in important keywords for electronic applications, and explains how you meet the requirements of the role being advertised. A covering letter should have more than the following blurb… “I’m applying the xxx role advertised in xxxx, please find my CV attached, I look forward to hearing from you soon.”
Use the covering letter to highlight your strengths and any experience that is relevant to the job. If you have done your homework and found out more about the company and role, you can highlight the areas that you meet the most important requirements that the employer is looking for.
Similar to when you are writing a CV, be succinct with your covering letter. Your covering letter should be no more than 1 page in length.
Here are our 7 top tips for writing a cover letter
- Tailor your covering letter for each application you make
- Keep the letter neat and tidy and clear of spelling mistakes
- Get your facts correct, e.g. recruiter’s name
- Address your letter to a named person, the hiring manager
- Indicate what you would like to happen next
- Match the skills/experience being asked for to your relevant skills & experience
- Explain any anomalies in your background, CV or suitability for the role
What are your best tips for covering letters that really DO get you to interview?
- 11 ways to write a CV that gets you an interview The purpose of your CV is to get you to interview. Nothing more, nothing less. As a career coach, when...
- 7 great tips to help you change career successfully Reality has forced many people in the last twenty-four months to consider a career change. Here are seven great tips...
- Why thinking about your achievements will help you get an interview How to use your past achievements to get your CV noticed and invited to interview....
- 5 ways your network can help you find your next role Your personal network is the best way of finding yourself your next role. This articles details 5 ways to use...
- 10 tips to help you get a job FAST Did you know that the conventional ways of finding a job a not the most effective or efficient? Here are...