Nowadays, you cannot get a decent job without sending your resume and cover letter to a company or recruiter. But even though you wish to succeed, that doesn’t mean you will make an ideal CV and cover letter. In fact, candidates often make silly mistakes along the way that prevent them from landing a good job. This can go on and on without you even realizing it. This is why you have to learn some basics! Here are some tips that will help you make ideal cover letter and resume.
Cover letter basics
The covering letter is the first step of the process. It is an introductory letter which you send together with a resume and explain your motivation for applying. Here are some things you need to know about it:
• Present yourself properly
• Mention your previous experience and skills acquired. After reading just the cover letter, the potential employer should have an incentive to employ you
• Be professional and double-check it prior to posting
• Explain your motivation for joining their team. It needs to sound as if you really want to stay there as most companies prefer recruiting long-term prospects
• Show knowledge about the company. This will create some goodwill
There are a lot of candidates (especially inexperienced ones) that don’t send a cover letter with resume. This is a big mistake; this letter can be seen as a positive gesture as well as an extra step that you made to endear the management. Not creating a covering letter can be a sign that you’re not really interested in the job and that this job application is just one of several that you posted during the day.
In addition, always make sure to use positive language in your job applications, this can make a huge difference. I came across this article: HOW POSITIVE LANGUAGE CAN HELP YOU WRITE GREAT COVER LETTERS which shares some great ideas as to implement this approach in your CVs and be more successful.
The resume should include all information that is relevant to your professional career. This includes education, previous jobs, additional activities, hobbies, languages and so on. Although it is mostly focused on professional development, it also includes some personal information. Companies are using this information to make a profile of you as a person and as a potential employee.
In order to maximize resume’s potential, here are some things you need to consider:
• Templates are a good way to create your first CV. Just fill the information and you will have a document that can be used by the companies. Depending on the country and position, different types of templates will be optimal. If you’re experienced enough, you might as well create a resume from scratch. You could also look at examples of good cv’s for inspiration.
• Creativity should be used in small amounts. If you’re applying for a job that requires some sort of ingenuity, being creative is the way to go. Still, you should never neglect that the main function of a resume is to bring you closer to a potential employer.
• Modify your CV for every new job you apply for. Don’t use one and the same as there might be some differences in terms of requirements and expectancies.
• Proper layout is the basis of every CV. Categorize data chronologically putting the latest job/education first. Avoid big sections of text and make sure that the document is easy to read. Keep sentences short whenever possible. Use one of the more standard fonts in size 10 or 12.
• Don’t disclose too much personal information. Giving your birthday, marital status, army status are definitely some of the things you should avoid mentioning. On the other hand, mentioning your hobbies is usually harmless and can even have a positive impact on your application.
These tips will help you to create both a cover letter and resume. If you feel you need further help then you might want to try a company like the Interview Skills Clinic who can help with writing CV’s and filling in job applications. Make sure to stick to these tips no matter what and you will be able to present yourself to a potential employer in the right way!