How To

How to write a cover letter

How to write a cover letter

A great letter makes recruiters read your resume. Write one to lead the pack.
Make it clear (well spaced, 12 font, black-on-white), concise (one page, standard business format) and easy to read (no fancy backgrounds or paper).
Find out who you’re writing to: name, title, address, salutation (Mrs/Ms) and gender (Jan, Kim, Mel). Write to interest them, not yourself. Cite the job’s name/number.
Your first sentence must be a winner. Say why you want to do that job with that employer (if known) and why you’re the best possible choice.
If you don’t know the selection criteria, request a job description or study the ad to figure them out. Then match your expertise and attributes to the keywords (e.g. initiative, teamwork, ambition).
Complement your resume – don’t rehash it – by highlighting points relevant to the job.
Use active verbs like lead, manage, create and deliver. Be confident and enthusiastic yet humble. Match your tone to the sector.
Add all your contact details and be available.
Start with bullet points. Write a draft. Sleep on it. Edit it. Read it aloud. Repeat until you’ve done your best. Then ask someone who knows to critique it.
One typo can sink you. So triple check spelling and grammar.
Send without delay.
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