Cover Letter Help
When you send off your CV, either in response to a specific job advert or as a general job enquiry to an agency about job opportunities, it is recommended that you include some kind of covering email note or letter also.
The cover letter is an important part of your job application. The cover letter introduces you to the recruitment agency or prospective employer and should encourage the recipient to read your CV.
If the letter does not say why the recruiter should take the time to find out more about you, your application is more likely to be overlooked. The recruiter is interested in not just finding someone who can do the job, but also finding someone who really wants to do that job. Your cover letter is therefore an opportunity to demonstrate your enthusiasm for the job you are applying for.
The cover letter should contain the following elements.
- A brief introduction explaining which job vacancy you are applying for (or for general enquiries, explaining the type(s) of job role you are looking for).
- Reasons why you would be a suitable candidate for the job.
- Reasons why you want this particular job (or type of job).
- A closing sentence requesting an opportunity to have an interview, as well as providing your telephone contact details.
Do’s and Don’ts:
- Keep the cover letter concise and to the point. Never write more than the equivalent of one side of A4 paper (email notes should be considerably shorter).
- Always write the cover letter in a professional and formal tone
- Always relate your skills to the specific job you are applying for.
- Use action words to make your experience sound most positive (words such as “planned”, “responsible for”, “developed”, “created”, “organised”, “negotiated”, “completed”, “achieved” etc).
- Always check your spelling and grammar thoroughly (remember that spell checkers will not pick up on some errors – such as “costumer” instead of “customer” or “form” instead of “from”).
- If you are including the cover letter as a separate attached document rather than an email note, write it as a formal letter with your name and address at the top.
- If you’re emailing your cover letter and CV, make sure that the subject line of your email includes the job title of the vacancy you are applying for as well as the job reference number, if known to you.
Some example cover letters are shown below:
Example Cover Letter – Email Note
|Sent:||20 September 2009|
Subject: French speaking Customer Services Representative – Job Ref J009888
Dear Sir or Madam,
I am writing to apply for the vacancy of French speaking Customer Services Representative based in West London, job reference J009888, as advertised on the Top Language.Jobs website.
I am a native French speaker with fluent English and have used both French and English in my previous work experience and education. I have 2 years of customer services experience including processing of customer orders using SAP, organising deliveries, and responding to queries and issues in a prompt manner. During my time at Jarré Corporation in France, I always achieved or exceeded required performance targets.
I have recently relocated to London in order to gain international experience within a multicultural working environment and to experience living in the UK. I believe that the French speaking Customer Services Representative role would be the ideal opportunity for me to use both my languages and my excellent customer services skills in order to develop my career further.
I am available to start work immediately and can be contacted either on my mobile number 07xxx 232 454 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org
I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Example Cover Letter – Separate Document Attachment
21 Longmore Road,
Wednesday 21st October 2009
Re: German speaking Sales Controller – Job Ref J009900G
Dear Sir or Madam,
I am writing to apply for the vacancy of German speaking Sales Controller based in Central London which I saw advertised on your company’s website.
I am a bilingual English and German speaker with dual nationality. I have approximately 4 years of successful Sales, Business Development, and Team Management experience within the telecommunications sector for both the UK and German markets, as well as having knowledge of other European markets.
I am an effective communicator and manager, having led a team of six Sales Executives to exceed sales targets and deliver a 25% year over year increase in sales turnover for the German market. I have re-organised and reprioritised marketing activities to achieve better results at lower cost, saving more than £100,000 per year. I have also improved relationships with our supply base, strengthening the company’s competitive position.
I am looking for a new challenge and am particularly interested in the German speaking Sales Controller role as it represents an excellent opportunity for me to use my existing skills, experience and languages and take on additional responsibilities. I am confident that with my experience and record of achievement to date I will be able to make a significant contribution to the continuing success of your company.
I look forward to having the opportunity to go through my application in more detail with you and will contact you at the beginning of next week to discuss further.
Home Tel. 020 xxxx 4321
Mobile. xxxxx 867 546