Cover letters give the employer an idea of why you are applying for a job. It’s your chance to introduce yourself, point out things in your CV that are relevant to the job you are going for and why you are suitable for that role. 

Top tips

Here are a few tips to help you write a great cover letter

  • Use plain white paper.
  • Don’t repeat what’s in your CV word for word. Your covering letter is almost like having a chat with someone, telling them about you, what you are good at and how it fits in around what they are looking for.
  • Your letter should set out your key skills to reassure the employer you are capable of doing the work required in the job described. Explain why you want to do this job.
  • Always double check what you have written and your spelling, if possible ask someone else to check it for you as well.
  • If you send your application online, make sure that the main words in your email include the words from your covering letter. Also explain what you have attached (i.e. your CV), which job you are applying for and any reference number if it is shown on the job advert. If you leave the email blank it may be overlooked.
  • It is useful if you can find out who, in the company, to send the letter to if not shown in the job advert. This shows that you are keen and have taken the time to find out who needs to read it.
  • Remember if you do start your letter with Dear Sir or Madam then end your letter with Yours faithfully. If your letter starts Dear Mr Smith or Mrs Smith then close with Yours sincerely.
  • Say when you’re available to start work and thank them for taking the time to read your application. It is also worth mentioning you are interested in speaking or meeting with them to discuss the role further.

Tailor your cover letter

Watch our short video on how to tailor your covering letter to every job.

For more advice on writing a cover letter and applying for a job, visit our website or get in touch with one of our online advisors.