The cover letter, also known as application letter, has a lot of misconceptions about its usefulness. In some industries it’s not even obvious anymore to attach a cover Letter to your resume. However, in the Life Sciences industry it’s actually frequently used by employers to make the first selection. And therefore as mentioned earlier in our previous blog it’s an essential tool to sell your resume. In this blog we will share how to use this as an advantage and set yourself apart from other candidates.
Employers are often receiving lot of applications for their vacancies, therefore you need to make sure that you always include a cover letter that leaves a long lasting impression. Look at it from the employers perspective; why should the invite you for an interview? Here are some tips which will increase the chances of success.
The cover letter convinces the employer why you are qualified for the position and why you should be selected for an interview. So it’s very important to keep that ultimate goal in mind when writing your letter. A good way to start is to highlight all requirements asked for in the vacancy and relate them to your skills. By doing this you know what the employer is looking for and what skills you should mention in your letter to be of relevance. This also means that you can’t use one letter for several jobs. Even if the jobs you are looking for are all in the same industry and sector and might have the same job titles as well, you should always go more in depth and relate to the specific required skills. Curious to see the latest Life Sciences jobs in the industry and sector of your preferences? Please click here.
Now the main objective is clear, you can start to put it all on paper. The length should be no more than one page. Cover letters have a rigid format, because the employer expects to see certain information. The format we advise you is as follows:
The Header and Opening speak for themselves.
This section should include the reason for your application. Mention the job title and where you’ve found the job. Employers like to know this because it tells them which media to use to advertise their jobs on. This could be a niche job board, an Life Sciences event, via a LinkedIn group, etc. Furthermore, include why you are making the step as well. A rule of thumb here is that you should focus on what you hope to find in this new challenge, instead of complaining about you current job.
In this paragraph you should mention what you have to offer the employer. Avoid summing up your resume, instead try to specify how your qualifications match the job you are applying for. But make sure that what you mention, is shown in your CV as an experience.
At the final paragraph you conclude your letter by showing your enthusiasm, a short summarise of why you fit the job (2 sentences) and state that you would be glad to elaborate on the employment opportunities in an interview. Don’t forget to mention that you will follow up and how you will do this.
Other things to keep in mind: