What is a cover letter?
A cover letter is an essential part of any job application and should always accompany your CV.
Cover letters are necessary for all types of job applications – cold contact, advertisement responses and referrals. The cover letter introduces your CV to the employer. It highlights and markets your skills, abilities and relevant experience, linking the CV to the
Your cover letter needs to stand out from other cover letters. A well written cover letter will make the employer want to know more about you. It will make the right impression and encourage the employer to not only look at your CV but to read it with interest.
What to include?
All good cover letters should include:
- Why you are interested in the job.
- Why you are interested in the firm.
- Why the employer should be interested in you.
- When and how you will be following up your application.
Cover letter rules to remember
- Presentation should be attractive, professional and easy to read. Type your cover and use a professional font and size 12 text.
- Vary the sentence structure and avoid overusing “I”.
- Don’t duplicate sections of your CV. Highlight the main points and draw attention to the key information in your CV that matches you to the vacancy/company.
- Show your interest in, and enthusiasm for, the position, the organisation and/or the industry.
- Proof read very carefully. Then get someone else to check it before making your final copy.
- Sign the letter.
Cover Letter Template
First and last name
Home and mobile phone numbers
Date Month Year
Employers name: address your letter to a specific person and use a title i.e Mr/Mrs/Ms. If necessary contact the company to obtain these details, including correct spelling].
Employers Position e.g. Manager
Dear [type contact name]
Tell the employer: why you are writing, the position you are applying for or type of work you are seeking and your referral source e.g newspaper ad, friends, conversation]
Outline: why you want the job, why specifically you want this job for this organisation, how your skills match the job/organisation.]
Demonstrate that: you know something about the company – e.g. products, services, clients, market, history and you have an understanding of the industry.
Be confident and positive. Request to have the opportunity to be interviewed. State when you will be making contact to follow up the application.
Useful LinksSee the cover letters section
of the Careers NZ website.