108 brilliant Cover L etters
G You still need to give them a compelling reason to read your CV
(except that in this case they won’t have it right there in front of
them; they actually need to click to open it).
However, there are certain practicalities that you need to deal with.
Never leave it blank! It’s extremely unprofessional to do so. But do keep
it short and simple. You could specify the vacancy title and reference if
applicable. If you’re making a speculative application, on the other hand,
you might need to be a little more inventive and make a greater effort to
catch the recipient’s attention. Don’t go over the top though; you certainly
don’t want to risk your email being labelled as spam and discarded.
Form of address
You can of course remove any text from the date upwards – your letter-
head and the recipient’s name and address. All of this is superfluous when
applying by email. The first line of your email can simply start, ‘Dear . . .’
Please bear in mind that just because this is
an email, that’s no reason to start with ‘Hi,’ or
suchlike. Start your email just as you would a
printed letter: ‘Dear . . .’ This isn’t an email to
a pal; it’s an important business letter.
I would definitely not recommend sending your cover letter as an email
attachment. The chances of it getting read will drop dramatically. Whilst
CVs should always be sent as attachments (because they normally look
awful when copied and pasted into an email), you should place the con-
tents of your cover letter in the body of your email.
Many people have an automated email ‘signature’ that goes out at the
bottom of every email they send. Whatever yours says, remember that it
will be seen by potential employers.You might decide a rewrite is in order!
A good idea is to repeat your telephone number(s).
start your email just as
you would a printed
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