From 5000 word essays to one sentence long cover letters, we've seen it all. Although both examples stand out, it’s absolutely not in the right way!
Based on our expertise, we’d like to share our candidate advice on what makes a compelling cover letter, giving you the best chance at securing the job.
Remember that this is a letter, so the official layout is expected. Your contact details should be at the top of the page, aligned to the left and should include; name, address, number and email address. You could also include a profile link (e.g. LinkedIn) as well.
Do your research on who you should be addressing the cover letter to. Instead of just ‘Hiring Manager’, you should be able to find who’s recruiting on the company website or on their social media.
Your cover letter needs to be a brief, concise letter that highlights who you are and what makes you the a perfect fit for the role. Keep the overall letter no longer than a page max – your potential employer should be able to skim read this quickly and easily.
You must tweak your cover letter! This is not a one size fits all document - bland, generic cover letters that aren’t specifically related to the job is a tell tale sign to the employer that a blanket cover letter has been sent around.
A general template is a good way to start, i.e. an introductory paragraph on who you are, what role you are applying for, followed by a brief explanation of your background, experience and aspirations. However, it is vital that you tailor the body of the letter to the job that you are applying for.
After a brief introductory paragraph. You need to highlight your work history and how that makes you a great fit for the role and company. Link your work experience with your future aspirations, and how the job/company fits in with your goals. Answer the below questions:
What have you done in your previous work history?
Why do you want the job/what aspirations do you have?
Why would you be a good fit?
Be convincing, make it clear that you want the position and demonstrate your excitement about the opportunity.
Your CV and your cover letter go hand in hand, so use the same formatting i.e. font and size for good presentation. Although it may be tempting, avoid just regurgitating all the information from your CV onto your cover letter. There is no point writing a cover letter if it says exactly the same information on your CV, it demonstrates that minimal effort has been applied and wastes time for both yourself and the employer.
Lastly, remember to proof read! Rereading with a fresh pair of eyes is necessary to ensure your spelling and grammar is correct.
Need further assistance with writing your cover letter? Our Recruitment manager Graham is happy to help; email@example.com