Presentation on theme: "Writing a Cover Letter IT 8/9 Edmond Chin Cover Letter."— Presentation transcript:
Writing a Cover Letter IT 8/9 Edmond Chin Cover Letter
Purpose What is the purpose of a cover letter? – To score an interview! – Introduces you to the employer. – To show a prospective employer that your skills and experience are the best match for the job.
Structure -Cover letters vary from one to the next as there are no “correct” cover letters but you can say that there are “incorrect” cover letters.
Structure -Cover letters should not be more than one page in length. -All lines begin at the left margin. -Block style. -3-4 paragraphs. -Include your phone number and email address. -The spacing between date and employer’s mailing address can vary depending on the length of the body paragraphs. Use spacing that balances the page.
Structure -Heading: -Contains your contact information -Date of your letter -Name of the person you are addressing -First paragraph (Introduction): -Convey your purpose. -Establish reasons for why you are interested in the company. -Second paragraph (Body): -Demonstrate your suitability for the job. -Detail your relevant skills, experience, education, interests, personal qualities, and specific work achievements. -Third paragraph (closing): -Establish your expectation of a positive response. -Close with your availability for an interview.
Tips 1)Always customize your letter towards the specific job you are applying for. 2)Do some research before you write your letter. Show that you are familiar with the company background. 3)Keep it brief and to the point. 4)Proof read your letter and make sure there are no spelling mistakes. 5)Edit and revise your letter so that it’s correct in spelling, punctuation, sub-verb agreement, capitalization, and grammar.
Tips CanadianCareers.com has compiled a list of top 10 tips for cover letters: 1)don't address your letter "Dear Sir or Madam" or "To Whom It May Concern"; find out who will be receiving the applications, usually a Human Resources Manager/Advisor, and address the letter to him/her 2)check your spelling and grammar and proofread it over and over again; use a word-processing package with built-in spell-checking and ask a friend to check it too... if you don't take the time and effort at this point, what should the employer expect from you after you have been hired! 3)never write the cover letter by hand; word-process it and get it laser printed (or print on the best mode possible using an ink-jet printer) 4)use an active voice and take ownership for your accomplishments; don't start every sentence with "I" 5)send a customized cover letter for every position you are applying for, not a form letter. Form letters will not impress the hiring manager. You must research the company and determine the traits and qualities they are looking for. 6)be specific... saying you are efficient, a team player, or have excellent communication skills is fine, but back it up with specifics from your experiences 7)don't just repeat what is on your resume. Take the opportunity to tell the employer what you can do for the company- that is, why you should be hired for this particular position at that particular company. 8)keep it brief... cover letters should be kept to one page, and in general, paragraphs should be kept to four to six lines or so. Full-block format is typically used. 9)use special effects (bold, different fonts, colour) sparingly or not at all; keep it professional. A standard font (Arial or Times Roman, 11 or 12 point size) is usually a good idea. 10)your cover letter is one of your key marketing documents - make it count!
Lets look at three cover letter examples: 1.Would you hire any of them? 2.Why or why not?
Your task for today is to: Write your own cover letter. - Make it up. - You can use the templates from Microsoft word. - Click on “File”, “New”, “Letters”, “Cover Letters”.
Some useful links: www.canadiancareers.com/coverletter.html www.careerplanning.about.com www.youth.gc.ca