What is a CV cover letter or covering letter?

The simple answer is that a cover letter or covering letter is a letter of introduction sent out by job seekers along with their CV / resume or application form to potential employers.    A CV cover letter for a job should explain the suitability of the candidate for the post.

That is the overall or general answer.  However there is more you should be aware of  if you want to produce effective letters that get you interviews.

Why send a CV cover letter?

what-is-a-cv-cover-letter-or-covering-letterAs we have said, a covering letter is a means of introduction.  Sometimes an employer will invite you to include a letter along with an application form, CV or resume as part of the recruitment process.  Many employers use written cover letters as a method of screening out applicants who lack necessary basic skill or have not demonstrated  in writing that they are sufficiently interested in the position.  Remember that the recruitment process  can be a lengthy and costly process, so an employer will only interview those who have impressed.  The best way to impress is to make sure your cover letter sells you.

Types of cover letter

Cover letters are typically divided into three categories:

  • The application form covering letter
  • The invited cover letter which responds to an advertised or known job vacancy
  • The speculative cover letter or uninvited covering letter which inquires about possible positions
  • The networking letter which requests information and assistance in the sender’s job search

Whether you are currently in a job or unemployed, looking for a new job can be frustrating.  If your covering letter sells you, your CV / resume looks neat and professional you will get interviews and the chance to impress in person.

At The Personal Development Cafe we will explain when you should use the different types of cover letter.  You can find a cover letter template  that you can use to write your own cover letter.

If you are looking for other great example CV cover letters  in your field to introduce your CV/resume to a prospective employer then  go to our sample CV cover letters section to find:

Sample cover letter for Admin Assistant

Sample cover letter for  Social Worker

Sample cover letter NLP

Sample cover letter for a Warehouse Operative / Assistant

Before you send out your cover letter, please remember how important it is to check for grammar and punctuation.  Sometimes a word transposed or omitted can have a devastating effect.  Just look at some of the worst CV mistakes for examples of bad grammar and punctuation.

If you have any questions, comments, need help writing a project manager CV or resume or would like further information on how to write a CV or resume, use our comment form below and we will gladly try and get the advice and guidance that you need.