How to Write a Perfect CV Cover Letter
Adding quality cover letters to your CV has become quite an essential aspect when applying for a new position. Having a good CV cover letter might just be the extra edge that a potential employer is looking for. At Job Mail we realize the importance of this and we’ve decided to give you some pointers in regards to writing the perfect CV cover letter.
Before Writing Your Cover Letter:
- If you don’t already have a CV, write one first: The experiences and skills you list on your CV should be tailored to the particular position you’re applying for. It should reflect the strengths that will be desirable to your potential employer.
- Research the target business / organization: This is so you can include info or facts relating to your desired job or industry. This will not only help you in writing a relevant cover letter but it will also be useful if you get an interview. Some key items you should ask yourself are: “What is the employer’s mission?” “What do they promote as setting themselves apart from competitors?” “What kind of customer base do they cater for?” “What kinds of people are in their target market?” “What are the company / organization’s values?” “What is the history of the employer?” And so forth.
- Take the time to write a targeted cover letter for each employer: This means customizing the cover letter you write for the potential employer that is offering the position. The cover letter should specifically relate your skills to the job you are applying for. This shows the employer that you’re taking it seriously.
- Analyze the job: Read the job description carefully. Check for the noted and assumed needs and determine the most important skills, qualifications and experience the employer is looking for. Write them down, and put a check mark next to the ones you have.
Tips on How to Write The Perfect CV Cover Letter:
- First paragraph: State why you are writing, indicating your interest in the job. If someone you know referred you to a potential employer, be sure to mention it. The reader of the letter will be encouraged to keep reading when they see a name that they recognize.
- Second / Third paragraph: In these paragraphs outline your qualifications and match them to the requirements of the position. Show enthusiasm and your desire to help the company reach its goals. Show the potential employer what you can contribute to their bottom line, not what you want to get out of the deal. Use what you’ve researched about the employer’s background and history. Try to make 2 or 3 solid points, backed up by specific examples. Relate some relevant details about the company so the employer knows you did some research ahead of time.
- Final paragraph: Include a positive statement or question that will cause the employer to want to take action. Make this closing paragraph between 2-4 sentences. Direct the employer to the enclosed CV, make your availability known for an interview, and if you want to be assertive, state when you will contact them to set up a meeting time to discuss the opportunity in further detail. Provide your own contact information (phone number, e-mail address) and welcome them to get in touch. It’s very important to finish off by thanking the employer for their time and consideration.
- Conclude your CV Cover Letter with “Yours sincerely,” (if you have addressed the letter to a named person), “Yours faithfully,” (if you have used a “Dear Sir” approach) or “Regards.”
What Not To Do:
- Avoid cliches and meaningless or wordy expressions.
- Remember that your cover letter should compliment, not duplicate your CV.
- Also remember that your cover letter is often the first contact with an employer, make sure it creates a good impression.
- It’s also important to take the time to target your cover letter to the job you are applying for.
- Make sure that there are no spelling / grammar errors on your CV cover letter.
We hope that you will find these hints helpful whilst job hunting. Feedback on this post is appreciated and welcome.
Latest posts by Henno Kruger (see all)
- Make Your Job Search a Success! - May 4, 2018
- Frequently Asked Questions From Job Seekers Who Use Job Mail - April 19, 2017
- Frequently asked Questions from Employers who use Job Mail - March 13, 2017