Writing a cover letter

A cover letter is a formal business letter that is about making a great first impression and is a way of introducing yourself to the employer. It should summarise your skills, aptitude, and enthusiasm for a specific job. Employers often use cover letters as a way of screening applicants, so it is important that it is a quality document that is tailored for each position you are applying for.

5 tips for success

  • Use a professional business format -1 page maximum and as a general guide 4-5 paragraphs.
  • Tailor your cover letter for each job you apply, ensuring you follow the specific instructions from the employer.
  • Show evidence of research into the organisation you are applying for and identify reasons you want to work with this specific organisation.
  • Use the ‘Key Words’ they use in the advertisement and give specific examples (evidence) of where you have demonstrated the skills/experience they are after.
  • Focus on what you will bring to the organisation rather than what you will gain from the experience.

For further support La Trobe University students and graduates can access a recorded Cover Letter Essentials webinar via the CareerHub resources page.

You will also find Cover Letter resources on Career Ready OnLine.