Your cover letter is your key to selling yourself. Yes, your CV is hopefully going to do that too, but where a CV covers your quantifiable skills a cover letter should cover your ‘soft’ skills.
So here is a few tips and tricks to write the perfect cover letter.
1. Personalise every cover letter
I consider this to be the number one most important tip. No one wants to read a generic cover letter, they want to know why you are the person for THIS job. Not any job.
Do some research on the company, see what the company culture is like and tailor your cover letter for them. They will notice it, and they will appreciate it.
2. Sell them with the first sentence
It is claimed that recruiters spend somewhere between 5-7 seconds looking at your CV and there doesn’t seem to be a stat for how long they look at your cover letter! That doesn’t leave much time to make an impression, so you need to capture their attention from the very beginning. Practice writing out a few different first lines. Maybe get a friend to take a look, make sure they can be objective!
DON’T start with ‘‘My name is…. I’m applying for…’’. It’s boring and they should already know that.
3. Don’t just re-type your CV
They’ve seen your CV, they don’t want to see it again. Recapping everything is a waste of everyone’s time. The whole point of your cover letter is to sell those skills that you couldn’t put on your CV. Focus on your ‘soft’ skills such as communication skills, emotional intelligence and your personality. Make them want to work with you.
4. Be different
On average a recruiter gets 250 applications for every job. They are going to read hundreds of ‘‘I’m a hard worker with great people skills’’. So think outside the box. If it’s appropriate try a little wit. However, don’t go overboard, humour doesn’t always translate well. Whilst your CV is where you lay out the facts, use your cover letter for the story.
5. Be yourself
After all, it’s you that you are trying to sell. If you write a cover letter that you’ve curated and thought too much about there will be a big disconnect when you reach your interview. It’s so important to fit in well with a company and a team so don’t lie or pretend to be something you are not. Let your personality shine.
6. Don’t write a cover letter…?
How about you don’t write one at all? I’ve heard lots of times that ‘I’m better in person than on paper’. If this is you, why not do things differently?
Through the imployable app, you can record and send video cover letters. Although it may be a little daunting to be on camera, for most of us, speaking comes more naturally than writing. So sell yourself, let them see the person behind the CV and win them over with your bravery and originality.
Download the app now and get started on your video cover letters!
For Android, click here.
For IOS, click here.