So you have your CV and you’re happy with it. Quite often you will see advertised vacancies that ask you for your CV and a covering letter. As you want to make this letter personal to each application you make rather than a generic one-size-fits-all letter that you merely attach to your email.
How can you make your letter stand out as much as your CV? There are some good tips below to make your covering letters as professional as your CV.
Try to address your letter to the person who will be making the decision. A quick, polite phone call to the reception should be enough.
Make sure you include your own contact details on the letter just in case your letter and CV get separated.
Make sure that your email address is professional sounding – ie not ” firstname.lastname@example.org ”
Clearly state any reference numbers within the letter.
Opening words should be what you can offer them, why is it in their interest to employ you, why you would make a “significant contribution.”
Make your letter fairly short – one page is fine with plenty of white space.
End your letter with a strong Call to Action – “I am available for interview any time, please call or email to arrange a further discussion…” (it’s OK to ask them to keep you on file but it might not be a good idea..you want an interview not to be filed away in a dark cabinet!
Make sure you sign the letter (either in ink if posting the letter or digitally if emailing.)
Don’t attach the letter if responding by email. Attach the CV and make the email your covering letter.
A covering letter is also a good place to give details that you would love to have put on your CV but just didn’t feel that there was room for it!
It really is a competitive market with multiple applicants per vacancy. Make yours stand out above the crowd!
Dave Smith of Career Visa UK is our leading authority when it comes to personal careers advice.
He has worked in the UK recruitment industry since 1991 and is now an expert Jobsearch Consultant specialising in CV creation and improvement. If you need help in preparing to enter the Job Market for the first time or are planning on a career change – simply get in touch via his website http://www.careervisa.co.uk/. You can also read more at his online blog at http://careervisa.blogspot.com/