Is a cover letter essential for your CV?
When it comes to applying for a new job a cover letter is probably one of the most overlooked aspects and could be something you’ve been missing from the start.
Although a cover letter isn’t essential, it can be utilised to make your application stand out from the rest of the competition, and possibly give you a much greater chance of gaining that all important interview.
So what is a cover letter?
A cover letter should be no longer than one page, and is designed to briefly explain why you are the right person for the job. It is ultimately a short letter which introduces yourself to the employer with a brief summary of why you applied and why you would be the best person for the job.
What should I write in my cover letter?
The cover letter should contain your personal details and also be addressed to the hiring manager. For example – ‘Dear Mr Mark Smith’. You could start the letter by stating that you saw the advert in the local paper or online, and then go on to say how you were passionate about the role and why you’d be the right person for the job.
This could be achieved by a brief explanation of your current skills, qualifications and past experience. You don’t however need to go into too much detail as this is what your CV is for, however the cover letter is a great way to make the whole application process more personalised and to utilise the letter to bring through your personality.
The letter should be concise and to the point, as well as passionate and enthusiastic about the employer and the role itself. And finally, a great way to close out the letter is to thank them for their time and state that you look forward to meeting them.
Although at this stage you haven’t yet been chosen for an interview, there is nothing wrong with being confident about your credentials. As long as you word it correctly you should come across confident in your own skills and grateful for the opportunity.
Is a cover letter essential?
No, the covering letter isn’t essential and not everybody uses it. However, if you want to get ahead of the competition, bearing in mind that your competition could be seventy other people, it really is something we would recommending using to stand out.
The cover letter gives you the chance to show the employer that you are passionate about the role and have taken the time to write a personal letter stating this – your CV won’t allow you to do this. It shows a greater initiative over other candidates that haven’t written one, and could well mean the difference between success and failure.
Where can I find some example cover letters?
If you would like some more information on how to write a cover letter along with some great examples, please click here.