A strong covering letter can differentiate your CV from the countless others that pass across an employer's desk, making your application stand out. Your covering letter is your introduction and your first opportunity to sell yourself. Here are some key tips to ensure you make the best possible impression from the outset.

  • Make sure your letter addresses the relevant contact name in the job advert.

  • Quote the job reference number and mention the job title where appropriate.

  • Keep it brief – include only the few points that demonstrate you’re a strong match for the job.

  • Avoid mentioning information already available in your CV.

  • Always include any information that is specifically requested, such as current salary.

  • Briefly outline your current situation and include your current or last job, qualifications and training relevant to the role.

  • Ensure the letter flows freely. The reader should be left with an overall impression that you’re a potentially valuable addition to the workforce.

  • Avoid negative information of any sort.

  • State briefly why you’re interested in them as an employer. This will show you’ve researched the organisation.

  • Highlight your transferable skills, achievements, versatility and what you can contribute.

  • Ensure the font and layout of your covering letter mirrors that of your CV.

  • Always re-read your letter to check for grammatical and spelling mistakes.

  • Close your letter with a polite expression of interest in further dialogue with the recruiter.

The real skill is including all of this information in three or four paragraphs; digestible facts that refer to your CV, will make the reader want to learn more and ultimately meet you.

If you would like any further advice on your covering letter, please contact us.


Below are a few useful links.

University of Kent.

University of Bristol.

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