Writing a good Cover Letter

The purpose of a cover letter is to secure an interview.

A cover letter can be used to:

Highlight relevant experience, qualifications and attributes for the job for which you are applying
Reflect your attitude
Provide specific information not covered in your CV (i.e. Availability: 1 Calendar Months notice)
A cover letter should capture the recruiters or employer’s attention and motivate an employer to interview you. The opening should appeal to the reader. If you don’t really have anything meaningful to say in a cover letter than rather do not write one.

Here are some quick tips for writing a good cover letter:

Should be addressed to the correct person
Should have an introductory paragraph, body, and concluding paragraph
The introductory paragraph should explain why you are writing i.e. saw your advertisement…
Keep it lean and to the point
Keep it positive
Include keywords: A recruitment agent will scan your cover letter for relevant keywords.
Keep it simple and professional without fancy fonts, borders or colours
Make sure there are no spelling or grammatical errors
Do not hand write a cover letter – it must be typed
At the end of the letter consider requesting an interview in closing
Make sure your contact details are on the cover letter as well as on your CV for ease of reference
Remember that the person you are writing to is probably busy so it is important to be efficient in your communication. A badly thought out, worded or presented cover letter will do more damage than good.

Consider if a follow-up letter or telephone call after you have sent your CV will be more effective than a cover letter in securing you an interview.

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