The letter that's just personal enough

When you're happy with your CV, it's time to dig out your very best writing skills and write a covering letter. Here, you have to sell yourself as the best candidate for the job in question, but in a tasteful way.

You personal letterThe letter that's just personal enough
When you're happy with your CV, it's time to dig out your very best writing skills and write a covering letter. Here, you have to sell yourself as the best candidate for the job in question, but in a tasteful way.

Adapt your letter to suit the job
Just as when you compile your CV, it's important to adapt your letter to suit the job you're applying for. You might not be happy about starting to change a letter that you've spent a lot of time on, but it'll be blatantly obvious if you don't do this, and if you can use the same letter for several applications you should consider whether it wasn't too general right from the outset.

Be honest
Your covering letter is your opportunity to explain the information you've listed in your CV and to tell the person recruiting why you'd be perfect for the job in question. Remember to describe yourself just as you are, in both your CV and your covering letter. If the information is straggly, you'll come across as confused.

Strike just the right balance between personal and professional
In your covering letter, you can be a bit more personal than you are in your CV. But it's all a balancing act. Your letter still has to sell you as the perfect person for the job, so don't devote too much space to your personal interests. And even though you don't need to be quite as formal here as in your CV, it's important for you to use correct language. Certainly, language is changing all the time, but what works in text messages to your mates isn't necessarily the right tone for your job application.

Proofread your application and eliminate any careless errors
Before you send off your application, it's important for you or someone you know to proofread it thoroughly in order to eliminate any spelling errors or other careless mistakes. Check that you don't start all your sentences with "I", and if you like read the application aloud in order to check that the text flows.

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