Writing a cover letter

How to write a cover letter

The importance of cover letter

Why on earth should I write a cover letter? By now, many of you are wondering whether it's really necessary to write a cover letter in response to an advertisement, or simply as a spontaneous application. So much so, in fact, that some of the younger generation simply deny its usefulness, arguing that a good CV will do the trick and trigger the interview. Resumes and cover letters are complementary. Enclosing a cover letter by e-mail or post can give your application more impact..

So how do you write a cover letter? How do you write it? What purpose does it serve if a Perfect CV enough on its own?

What is a cover letter?

Whether in the form of a covering e-mail or a classic letter, as the name suggests, this is a letter that accompanies the curriculum vitae and, without being a repetition of it, should enable the recruiter to understand :

- that you are able to express yourself using a minimum of codesand to oblige you to follow a certain formalism in presenting yourself;

- then that you have the human qualities that will make you the collaborator they're looking for that can't be detected by reading your CV;

- finally you have the experience and training to motivate you to give your best. and that you're really ready to commit to the company;

How to write a letter

If, when writing your cover letter, you do copy and paste examples you've taken from the Internet, it's unlikely to exude authenticity and make a good cover letter. If it's just a reflection of what you've gleaned from a few key words, chances are your presentation will be similar to that of many candidates for the same position.

What makes a good cover letter as opposed to a standard cover letter?

The standard cover letter requires a certain amount of formality. And you'll find plenty of templates to help you decide which form to follow. Introduce yourself, talk about the position and how you're perfectly suited to it on the basis of your relevant experience, your results and your wishes - that's all there is to it! A polite greeting and off I go?

At best, you'll have written a cover letter. As for saying it's good, let's just say it'll be at least as good as your competitors' if they've done it the same way. Writing a cover letter is all about expressing your motivation for a specific position in a given recruitment context.

An original cover letter

L'originality pays, too much originality kills. If you deviate too much from the standard way of applying for a job, you'll have to do so little so that your reader doesn't seem lost and stop reading your letter too soon. This means you need to respect a minimum of formalism, without sticking to the first sample letter you find on the web. Write a letter that reflects your personality, not someone else's!

The length of a cover letter

Put yourself in the recruiter's shoes. If he's likely to receive thousands of applications for the same position, any document you provide that isn't up to standard will appeal to him. Either you make your cover letter too short, and he'll judge your motivation by the effort you put into writing it, or you make it too long, and you'll quickly be perceived as someone who could drown in detail, but above all incapable of getting to the point. Between these two pitfalls, there's still room for a document that's little more than a page long.

One page is a long time to fill when you think you have nothing to say, but it's also a very short time when you have several years of experience and find them relevant enough not to know which ones to highlight.

There are also situations where you'll need to go beyond the ordinary, but let's focus on the general framework. The type of cover letter you write will largely depend on your job objective.

Cover letter: internship, first jobBTS, Parcoursup or summer job, the interview tool

It's your recruiter you need to think about. If you're looking for a job, it seeks to fill a position that corresponds to a need in the company. And it's likely to receive many applications. In a nutshell, you need to get to the pointThis means getting straight to the point and giving reasons for your request.

Remind yourself of the position you're applying for and go straight to the presentation. Whatever your experience, use it to support your application. If you're just starting out, you can use your sporting activities or hobbies to show that you have the qualities that match the profile we're looking for. President and negotiator for your association? Say so if you're applying for the position of sales assistant, and emphasize your ability to pick up the phone and build a network.

The recruiter will not deduce your cross-functional qualities from your CV. Use your experience to demonstrate the qualities you have demonstrated that are relevant to the position to be filled. Show that you understand what the recruiter is looking for by linking your qualities to his expectations. Reread the job advertisement. This will help you turn it into a convincing letter. Cover letter and CV should be one and the same in your job search.

How to rédimanage an application?

The recipient generally expects you to structure your letter by first talking about yourself and your professional experience. In the next paragraph, they'd expect you to talk about your employer, his strengths and what motivates you to join him. Then, you'll talk about what you have in common with your employer's business sector, your career plans and your experience. Finally, ask for a job interview before concluding with a polite greeting.

This classic form is not compulsory, but it does help to structure your cover letter. If you want to stand out from the crowd, there's no need to take your cue from a free cover letter template.. Writing a letter is within your grasp if you follow these writing tips.

A few tips for writing a cover letter

In all cases, remember to keep your presentation clear, with distinct paragraphs. Don't hesitate to consult sites offering cover letter templates to get an idea of the ideal layout. If you're sending a handwritten letter, make sure your handwriting is clearly legible.If not, prefer an electronic version. Written with care, it will also reflect your personality.

How to finish a cover letter

"Yours sincerely Find out who's really in charge of recruitment first, then adapt the greeting. There are many ways to greet your future employer. To find out polite expressions to use, see our article on the subject.

As with all correspondence, when writing a letter, be sure to include not only your name, but also the name of the person to whom your letter of application is addressed, and to mention the position you are applying for in the subject line. Whether handwritten or not, remember to have your letter proofread, as it should be free of spelling and grammatical errors. Also observe the rules of typography.

My cover letter checklist :

- check my name and contact details (no fancy e-mail addresses) ;

- put the target position in the subject line;

- indicate date ;

- Is my font legible? Does my mail print correctly?

- check for the absence of verbose vocabulary: no "serious", "dynamic", "motivated". Otherwise, I'm just like all the other candidates!

- no familiarity, keep it professional and courteous;

- don't lie about my achievements! It's a mistake I'll pay dearly for;

- check that my skills are properly promoted;

- proofread for spelling, syntax, grammar and presentation (not my mother, not my sister, I'll choose someone impartial who doesn't know me);

- sign my cover letter ;

- name my CV and cover letter correctly with the recruiter in mind;

- add - if available - a letter of recommendation to my application;

- add my CV to my cover letter and check that the attachments are present;

- add my application to my application tracking sheet (it would be a shame not to remember to whom and when you sent an application) ;

- keep an archive of my CVs and cover letters;

- include a thank-you letter;

- plan to send a reminder letter if there's no response.

Did you find this article useful? Share it on your social networks! Other tips for writing CVs and cover letters are available on the cvsansfaute.fr blog!

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