Covering letters

Covering letters image Your covering letter is the first thing the employer will see – make a good impression!

What exactly is a covering letter?

This is your chance to tell the employer who you are and why you want the job. Employers want to take on staff who can do the job. A covering letter gives you the chance to convince the employer that you really want the job. Use your covering letter to show off your enthusiasm and keenness. You can send your covering letter by post along with your CV or application form. More and more employers are using email to accept applications. If you send a CV or application form by email write your covering letter in the body of the email itself.

How do I write a great covering letter?

  • If you are writing a letter to print or send as an attachment to an email regard it as a formal letter. 
    • Put your name and address in the top right hand corner
    • Put the employers address in the top left hand corner
    • Place the date below one of the addresses

  • First paragraph
    • State which job you are applying for
    • Say where you saw the job advertised
    • Explain why you applying for the job

  • Next read through the information you have about the job. What qualities and skills are they asking for. Write a few clear sentences to show that you have these qualities. Don’t repeat lots of the information you have put in your CV but use a few of the best bits.
  • Now explain why you are applying for that particular job or job role. If you are looking for a new challenge - say so. If you have hobbies or other experience related to the job state them, make the employer actually want to read your CV.
  • Make sure you say what you have enclosed with your letter e.g. an application form, any examples of work you have been asked to send in.
  • Sign off with 'Yours sincerely'.

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