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So You Want to Write Great Cover Letters?

Catherine Z Jones
 


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We are 4 interviewers and most of the cover letters we receive are just plain dull. They refer to the ‘attached resume', indicate an interest in the job and ask for an interview.

But good cover letters can do so much more than this - they can win you an interview!

Interviewers are human and most humans enjoy reading letters. Reading resumes, CVs and job application forms is less exciting and interviewers tend to skim read these at a fair pace.

In fact research suggests that interviewers only spend up to 15 seconds on each resume and reject up to 94% straight away.

We timed ourselves and weren't much different, but we found we read ALL our cover letters in full.

It's your first introduction to your potential employer so engage their interest immediately by writing a first class cover letter which leaves them in no doubt of your suitability for the position. It's much more likely that your resume or CV will be read in full if you do this.

How Do I Write Great Cover Letters?

Follow these 5 steps:

  1. Open by saying what position you are applying for and where you saw it advertised.
  2. State your interest and preferably your excitement and enthusiasm at the prospect of getting the job.
  3. Demonstrate in 1-2 paragraphs why the company or organisation needs you. Don't be shy and boring. Sell your achievements, qualifications, skills, experience or personal characteristics as they relate directly to the job you want. Make them relevant and make them sound great.
  4. Tell your potential employer explicitly how you can help them.
  5. Close with a request for an interview

Writing great cover letters isn't hard, and the benefits can be enormous.

For more help and advice read our cover letters advice and the cover letter samples . You'll be well on your way to landing your dream job.

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