When it comes to employment, companies and candidates alike are looking for the perfect fit. While recruiting new members of staff is about finding the most suitable person for the role, employers have limited time, money and resources to spend – so making the right first impression counts.
You may have spent years on your CV and have a wealth of skills, abilities and qualifications, but employers now want to know more about who they’re taking on. Your personality, work ethic, and whether you would fit in with the company culture all come into play. So how can you demonstrate your Unique Selling Points in each of these areas? By writing a stand-out cover letter.
Why You Need a Cover Letter
While a CV shows what you’ve done in your career, a cover letter can showcase who you are as a person. Employers will want to see your knowledge, enthusiasm and motivation exemplified on paper before they offer an interview, so make sure your cover letter stands out from the crowd.
Here are six important dos and don’ts for creating a coveted cover letter…
- Write in your own words. As tempting as it might be to use a template, the point is to convey your personality while still being professional. Focus on effective keywords and phrases that demonstrate how your skills and experience match what they’re looking for.
- Keep it organised. Structure your cover letter so that it demonstrates the main points clearly and concisely. Use your strongest attributes first and skip any that are irrelevant to the role.
- Do your research. Your cover letter is your opportunity to show what you know about the company and why you want to work for them, so make sure to tailored it to the position.
- Be too informal. While it’s great to show your personality, you still need to be polite and professional when writing your cover letter. Approach it as a business offer instead – what can you provide in terms of new ideas and what benefits will you bring to the table?
- Forget to proofread. In the excitement of finding your dream job, you speedily type out an email, attach your CV, and press ‘send’. But if there’s a grammatical error, you can easily ruin your chances, especially when employers are looking for diligence and attention to detail.
- Write too much. It can be easy to get carried away with your cover letter, especially when you meet all the ‘essential’ and ‘desirable’ criteria. Stick to the most important parts of the job specification and what would make you an asset to their company. One side of A4 is more than enough, and half this length for emails.
Making the Right Impression
Whether you’re applying for your first job or your fiftieth, there’s always room for improvement. For top tips and expert advice in finding your next career opportunity, contact our team at Talent UK.