5 Tips For The Perfect Cover Letter

 

First impressions are everything, so the pressure to create the best cover letter easily overtakes. When approaching a prospective company, you are just as important to them, as they are to you. The fact is, there is competition for every role out there, so your cover letter needs to shine brighter than the others in the pile. Don’t get disheartened, the process is a tough one, but don’t fall at the first hurdle. To borrow a lyric from ‘La La Land’, you are that ‘someone in the crowd’, they just haven’t found you yet. Live by these five top tips that will get you noticed by the employer:

 

photo via Erica Choi

1. Keep it brief, concise and to the point

Employers will want a short introduction, so they can get straight to what they need, your CV. Try not to repeat anything that can easily be gleaned from your CV, for example, your credentials or previous experience. Unless there is something relevant that you are proud of and you fear that it may be missed.

It is advisable to make the effort to find out who will be reading your letter. Try to find this out and personalize it accordingly. You can do this by calling the company, searching LinkedIn or looking at the various roles listed on the company’s website. Whilst I appreciate this may be time-consuming, employers notice. In regards to personalizing, this does not mean gushing about previous projects that the company has been involved with – just a simple acknowledgment of the fact that you know who they are and what they do will suffice.

2. Grammar and punctuation

If I receive a work email with poor spelling, incorrect apostrophes and capital letters in the wrong places or the language used rivals that of a text message, it is a turn-off. It doesn’t have to be wooden and formal, just professional. This can be difficult, try not to start every sentence with the word ‘I’, it makes the letter monotonous to read.

If you are not so confident with grammar, maybe consider attending a course or using software, such as Grammarly. Failing that, ask a friend or a family member to take a red pen to it before you send it.

3. Branding and layout

If like me, you want everything to be aesthetically pleasing, you could come up with a brand. This means that both your covering letter and your CV can have their own format and style so that everything looks consistent. It shows that you are serious about how you are perceived by the prospective employer and will make you look more polished and professional against other candidates.

4. What prompted you to write to them

If there is a specific position you are responding to, mention where you saw it advertised and why. I once saw an advert for a company that specialized in two industries that I had vast experience in. There was no vacancy at the time, but they kindly brought me in for a coffee. I was their hybrid they didn’t know they needed and so they created a role for me there and then. Create your opportunities, don’t wait for a job notification to come through on your email and then get disheartened that the role has already had 370 views.

Hopefully, these tips will provide you with some things to focus on when you begin to write your letter – good luck landing your dream job!

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What do you think is essential in a cover letter?


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First impressions are everything, so the pressure to create the best cover letter easily overtakes. When approaching a prospective company, you are just as important to them, as they are to you. The fact is, there is competition for every role out there, so your cover letter needs to shine brighter than the others in the pile. Don’t get disheartened, the process is a tough one, but don’t fall at the first hurdle. To borrow a lyric from ‘La La Land’, you are that ‘someone in the crowd’, they just haven’t found you yet. Live by these five top tips that will get you noticed by the employer:

 

photo via Erica Choi

1. Keep it brief, concise and to the point

Employers will want a short introduction, so they can get straight to what they need, your CV. Try not to repeat anything that can easily be gleaned from your CV, for example, your credentials or previous experience. Unless there is something relevant that you are proud of and you fear that it may be missed.

It is advisable to make the effort to find out who will be reading your letter. Try to find this out and personalize it accordingly. You can do this by calling the company, searching LinkedIn or looking at the various roles listed on the company’s website. Whilst I appreciate this may be time-consuming, employers notice. In regards to personalizing, this does not mean gushing about previous projects that the company has been involved with – just a simple acknowledgment of the fact that you know who they are and what they do will suffice.

2. Grammar and punctuation

If I receive a work email with poor spelling, incorrect apostrophes and capital letters in the wrong places or the language used rivals that of a text message, it is a turn-off. It doesn’t have to be wooden and formal, just professional. This can be difficult, try not to start every sentence with the word ‘I’, it makes the letter monotonous to read.

If you are not so confident with grammar, maybe consider attending a course or using software, such as Grammarly. Failing that, ask a friend or a family member to take a red pen to it before you send it.

3. Branding and layout

If like me, you want everything to be aesthetically pleasing, you could come up with a brand. This means that both your covering letter and your CV can have their own format and style so that everything looks consistent. It shows that you are serious about how you are perceived by the prospective employer and will make you look more polished and professional against other candidates.

4. What prompted you to write to them

If there is a specific position you are responding to, mention where you saw it advertised and why. I once saw an advert for a company that specialized in two industries that I had vast experience in. There was no vacancy at the time, but they kindly brought me in for a coffee. I was their hybrid they didn’t know they needed and so they created a role for me there and then. Create your opportunities, don’t wait for a job notification to come through on your email and then get disheartened that the role has already had 370 views.

Hopefully, these tips will provide you with some things to focus on when you begin to write your letter – good luck landing your dream job!

LET’S CHAT

What do you think is essential in a cover letter?


Sign up for our newsletter and stay up to date

  • Madison Grace

    Grammar is so important haha! Too often I see rookie mistakes, and I’m like mate – maybe you should invest in grammarly?!

    Madison xx

    MY BLOG: http://www.bymybedside.com

  • Jessica Wen

    Super helpful – I am usually the one that people turn to for checking cover letters so this gives some good criteria for me to check them against! Grammarly is fantastic, I’m such a big fan :) thank you for sharing!

    https://daringtojess.wordpress.com