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Cover Letter Just as important as your CV Usually read before your CV Makes the connection between you and the opportunity Must be personalised & customised.

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Presentation on theme: "Cover Letter Just as important as your CV Usually read before your CV Makes the connection between you and the opportunity Must be personalised & customised."— Presentation transcript:

1 Cover Letter Just as important as your CV Usually read before your CV Makes the connection between you and the opportunity Must be personalised & customised Must focus on the job & organisation Reinforces suitability & evidence for this Should match & complement your CV

2 Covering letter A business-like, formal, carefully presented, one-page letter, preferably to a named person, which should: Say what you are applying for Explain why you are interested in the job and employer Emphasise your suitability and highlight your strengths Positive ending, inviting further contact

3 CV ~ key messages Employers spend less than 30 seconds scanning CVs Dont think of your CV as one set document Adapt it, make it fit for purpose Visual impact important Which style/format appropriate for you/job? Content must be relevant to opportunity Most important/relevant information first Use positive and appropriate vocabulary

4 What to include Personal details: name, address, telephone, Career objective or personal profile?? Education, training, qualifications Work experience/voluntary work Skills Achievements Interests and activities Referees

5 Education and Work Experience Usual to start with the most recent For education give qualification titles, dates, results, institution attended, modules, projects, skills, etc. For employment give job title, name of organisation, dates, main duties, skills you developed, responsibilities

6 Skills Your skills could be Examples of skills: job specific, IT, leadership, team work, communication, problem solving, etc. incorporated into other sections of your CV (employment or education ) written as a skills section focusing on areas relevant to your target career Ensure there's some evidence!

7 Interests and Activities Must add value Relate to skills areas (team work, public speaking, leadership) Dont just list them, e.g., music, reading, sport ~ give some detail and make it sound interesting Avoid the ordinary or obvious (e.g., socialising with friends, watching TV, etc.)

8 Referees One academic plus one other (usually an employer) Ask their permission first Let them know what you are applying for and give them a copy of your CV Alternative is to say References available on request

9 Best & Worst CV Words (Research from University of Hertfordshires School of Psychology) 10 words that make a good impression achievement, active, developed, evidence, experience, impact, individual, involved, planning, transferable skills 10 words to avoid! always, awful, bad, fault, hate, mistake, never, nothing, panic, problems

10 Fonts From Psychology of Fonts by Aric Sigman Arial, Verdana, Comic Sans MS, Tahoma are seen as being legible; impact making; contemporary Times New Roman & Courier New as business like _______________________________________________________ Sans fonts (without curly bits on letters) are clearer to read, e.g., Arial, Verdana, Geneva Font size usually 12, but depends on font and spacing Headings/name can be larger

11 Putting an employer off Too long Disorganised, poorly presented Bad spelling, grammar and punctuation Too fancy, gimmicky Vagueness, not giving enough information Too much or irrelevant information Jargon or abbreviations Gaps in dates, inconsistencies Not skills/achievement oriented Misdirected

12 Websites for CV advice Careers website > Current Student > CV writingwww.mdx.ac.uk/careers Graduate Prospects > Jobs and Work > Applications, CVs & Interviewswww.prospects.ac.uk Windmills Career Development Programme > CV Writingwww.businessballs.com CV Builder https:// /index.phphttps:// /index.php also many job vacancy websites and professional bodies offer advice on CVs


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