Cover letters are one of the most important aspects of the job application process, but many people don’t approach cover letter writing seriously. When complimented by an effective CV, a strong cover letter will encourage recruiters to spend time reading your CV and seriously consider you as a candidate.
Cover letters are the first thing that recruiters and hiring managers see when you apply for a job; making a positive first impress is vital. With a professionally-written, role-specific and tailored cover letter, your application will stand out and improve your success in the job market. Here, CV Nation’s professional CV and cover letter writers provide six tips on how to prepare a professional cover letter.
- Don’t Be Generic – While it is acceptable to prepare a generic cover letter, make sure you tailor it to each company you apply for. State the position that you are applying for and ensure your cover letter is industry and role specific.
- Don’t Exceed One Page – While you likely have a great deal of information that you want to convey to your potential employer, cramming your entire career history into your cover letter will not encourage the recruiter to spend time on your application. Recruiters often receive hundreds of applications for each role, so make sure your cover letter is concise, void of superfluous information and no longer than one-page in length.
- Detail Why You Want to Work for The Company – Tailor your covering letter even further by touching on why you want to work for the company you are applying to. Do some research into the company’s history, values and objectives. Tell the recruiter what appeals to you about the company and how you can fit into their organisation.
- Use the STAR Approach – The STAR approach is a very effective method of navigating your way through job interviews, but this approach can also be used in your cover letter to demonstrate the ways in which you can add value for your potential employer. The STAR approach consists of Situation, Task, Action and Result. Dedicate one paragraph to STAR. You don’t want to go into too much depth at this stage of the job application process. For example, if you work in customer service, detail a situation where you were faced with a difficult customer. Then touch on the task, describing the goal you had identified for yourself, followed by the action you took. Finally, describe the positive result you achieved. With this approach to cover letter writing, you can highlight specific examples of how you can deliver results in your field.
- Study the Job Description – Study the job description for the position and draw connections between the essential skills they are looking for and your capabilities. Use specific examples of times you have used these skills.
- End Your Cover Letter Professionally – Bring your cover letter to a close by stating your interest in proceeding to the next stage of the job application process and expressing your confidence in your ability to add value to the company. If the job description asks you to state further details, such as your daily rate, availability or expected travel allowance, ensure to provide that information in your closing paragraph.
If you need help writing your cover letter, or if you already have a cover letter that you feel could be improved, feel free to get in touch with our professional CV and cover letter writers by clicking here. We our experts in writing both targeted and tailored cover letters for professionals in all industries and sectors.