An application letter means a letter, a curriculum vitae and a social profile at for example LinkedIn.
Your application letter is the introduction to the curriculum vitae. It should reflect why you want to apply for this university or this job. Later in your career the importance of the letter fades and your experiences become more important.
The letter is personal and there should be personal reasons inside. To make a application letter which will be read, you should at least make a logic letter.
In principle you can follow several steps to come to a normal letter. The total length should be not more than 4 or 5 paragraphs. The letter is just an extra. You can see it as the first minute in your application interview.
Of course it will not be easy to write to 30 companies a different letter. But still you must keep the letter personal and to the taste of the company where you want to offer your working skills. The letter should be easy to read, so choose a normal letter and keep the paragraphs within a few lines.
Before going to your interview, test yourself on internet for strong and weak points. There are lots of free tests at the internet. In all interviews these question will come back.
Interviewers look at your behavior. They will chat with you about simple stuff like the weather, the voyage, the weekend before they ask more about your history. During this first phase of the interview they observe your normal ‘relax’ behavior’. In the second phase the interviewer will look for differences in your facial and body behaviour. Remember 60% of your message is coming from your body and not from your words.
step 1: address
Your name, address, phone number
The companies name and address
Name of place and date
step 2: Dear
To start correct a letter is to use the name of the addressed person. If you write an open
application, just look in their website who to contact. If there is nothing, just call the firm or university
and ask for the human resource department. But probably the person of the reception desk can already give you the name.
Please ask for the correct spelling and remember if the addressed person is a she or a he. .
step 3: the openings paragraph
In this paragraph you will explain why you write the letter. So to which function do you apply. Or which
study do want to follow.
If you write an open application you can explain which kind of work you are looking for.
step 4: why do they need you
This is the paragraph where the decision is made if your resume will be read. Please explain
why are suitable for the function or why you want to follow this study.
Which of your relevant strong points you have to address here (should be connected to the
job your are applying at; about 2 or 3 will be enough). Give a short description of your
relevant education and relevant working experience.
step 5: why this employer or university
Explain why you want to work for this company. Don’t say anything about what you want to learn here.
They want to hire people who can offer them something. Make sure that you know what the company does,
read the website, scan newspapers. If you find negative news, don’t mention it, you want to work there
for the positive things they achieved. In case of an university you want of course to learn a lot, so explain
why you choose this university
step 6: the closer
Always use a last pro active strong sentence, such as ‘I like to explain
my letter in a personal interview and hope to hear from you soon.’
step 7: check the contents
Did you follow the above mentioned steps? Does a neutral reader understands your letter?
Are there no mistakes made in spelling and grammar?
step 8: send the letter
By email: use a neutral email address; save the letter and resume in the correct format in a
pdf file. Make a small formal email where you explain once more for which function you apply and
mention the two pdf files. .
By mail: use white paper from high quality and use the printer on high resolution. Use a A4
envelope with a hard back cover.
Normal companies will send you within two weeks a letter where they confirm that they
received your letter. If you didn’t receive this confirmation letter, you can contact them to see
if your letter has arrived. In practice the chance that your letter get lost is very small.
step 9: thank you note
After your interview, don’t forget to send a thank you note afterwards
step 10: review
If you have send 4 letters and you did not had one interview, please review your approach.