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Aaaargh. I've got to write a covering letter and can't get started

(5 Posts)
tattycoram Thu 27-Aug-09 09:33:07

Help! I'm applying for a job, and need to send cv and a covering letter. I know that I need to reflect the essential requirements as far as possible in the letter, but won't that turn into a bit of an essay. And I have a real block on a line to start it with.

Also, I would like to address it to someone, but am not sure whose name I should ask for - should it be head of HR or someone in the department that I am applying to?

MrsBadger Thu 27-Aug-09 09:45:43

If the addressee isn;t specified in the ad, address it to Dear Sir / Madam

Dear Sir / Madam,

Further to you advertisement [in, on, ref no] I would like to apply for the post of [job, dept].

I have extensive [x] experience, including [specific points from ad] and have [contributed actively to the success of projects or other point form ad] in my previous roles. Having worked in [field] for several years I am interested in [continuing OR expanding my experience] and applying my skills in [same / new] areas.

My referees can be contacted at the following addresses:
[insert]

Please find enclosed my curriculum vitae. I look forward to hearing from you shortly

Yours faithfully,

Wilhelmina Badger

tattycoram Thu 27-Aug-09 10:01:17

Thanks Mrs B. How long would you make that middle paragraph? The person spec is pretty detailed

MrsBadger Thu 27-Aug-09 10:12:28

Not so long that the letter is more than one page - try and pick the most important points in the ad that arent covered by the info in your CV.
So if your CV includes in the bullet points about your current role/responsibilties 'delivering projects on time and on budget' then don't waste space in that para saying 'I have experience of delivering projects on time and on budget' unless that is the TOP item in the person spec.
But it is a good place to say nebulous things about your personality (eg) that you are dynamic / flexible / enjoy working with people / perform well in a team environment etc that can be hard to squeeze into a CV.

The covering letter is to get them to read your CV and to give them a bit of extra info, not to regurgitate the person spec or duplicate your CV.

tattycoram Thu 27-Aug-09 10:14:40

Right, that makes sense. Thanks very much!

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