When applying for a new role, you may be asked to provide a cover letter or a personal statement. Even if it is not specified to provide one, it is always recommended!
Each job application is different so be sure to read the application instructions fully as they some will include instructions as to how they would like your personal statement submitted, this could be in the form of an actual letter, typed up on an A4 piece of paper, or the body of an email with your CV attached.
Why is a cover letter or personal statement important?
They are written to highlight specific information that make you relevant to the role or organisation. It should sell your skills and abilities and ultimately make the reader want to invite you for an interview!
You should include:
- Your contact details (as per your CV)
- Where you found the vacancy or what type of roles you are interested in (if speculative)
- Why you are suitable for the job and/or organisation – matching the skills you have to those on the job description.
- What you can do for them, benefits, benefits, benefits!
- Closing statement
What structure should I use?
Although there are no set rules as to how a cover letter/personal statement should be structured, the most important thing is that it flows well and is not too wordy. The ideal length should be between half to a full A4 page.
A rough idea of how to set yours out:
- Opening – Why you are getting in touch, job role, where you saw it advertised
- Why you are suitable for the role – Match up your skills to the job description, ensure to include key words.
- What can you do for the company – give an example of a success you have had in a previous role which you feel is relevant and will evidence your skills
- Benefit – Why are you the right fit, what will you bring to the company, why do you want to work for them
Close – thank them for taking the time to read your application.