A strong cover letter and CV is the key to getting past the initial application phase and one step closer to interview stage. Take a look at these 14 tips for perfecting both of these documents.
Your CV and covering letter are sometimes all that stands between you and an interview. Regardless of the job you’re applying for, submitting a polished cover letter and CV is an absolute must.
Here we share our top tips for making sure both of your documents get you noticed for all the right reasons.
But first, let’s just spend a few minutes focusing on why having a strong cover letter and CV is so important:
This is the first chance you get to attract an employer’s attention. What your cover letter says informs whether or not your CV even gets read. It also shapes those initial thoughts about you and your abilities. A strong letter sets you off on the right positive note.
If there’s one thing we want to stress to you, it’s the fact you must tailor your CV so it focuses on the end game – the role you are applying for. Then, and only then, should you share it with HR teams and recruiters. Best practice dictates that you should create different versions of your CV that align with the different positions you are going for.
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“After I'd been out of industry for about 5 years, I started to think, if I was ever going to return, I'd better do it soon. It was tough. I faced a lot of dead-ends and disappointments. I soon realised that recruitment consultants are the gatekeepers to most jobs and because I had got a slightly unusual CV, they weren't making room for me. I went to an ICAEW event about returning to work after a career-break and that's when I came across caba. When I heard about their career coaching I decided to go for it. It's a great service - the career coaching.”
Spending time perfecting your cover letter and CV may be the last thing you want to do, or have time for. But it will help make sure that when you do go for a job, you will hopefully sail past the first hurdle, and won’t have to spend hours on end getting noticed. What’s more, only you will benefit from putting the effort in, nobody else.
Our career coaches are here to help you develop a career plan that helps improve your confidence and networking skills, creates an effective job search strategy, builds a winning CV and transforms your interview skills.
We support past and present members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales (ICAEW)1, ACA students2, ICAEW staff members3, and the family and carers of members and students4.
You can find out more about our available support both in the UK and around the world on our support we offer page.
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*Please note none of our other services are means tested.