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How To Write A Cover Letter In English?

By Yann, published on 28/12/2018 We Love Prof - AU > Languages > ESOL (English) > Learning To Write a Cover Letter In English

When you are applying for a new opportunity, your CV will be the most requested thing that they will use to determine if you are suitable for the job. While you can just send your CV off to the employer without any other communication, it is advisable in all cases except where explicitly asked not to. To submit your CV and write a motivation letter in English which helps you to present your CV in the right light to any employer.

When you have gained your experience in a foreign country, it may not seem obvious, but when you apply for jobs or opportunities in English speaking countries, you will have to translate your application into English for it to be considered at all.

Internships abroad, secondments abroad, seasonal jobs, student employment, job applications and other kinds of applications. Knowing how to write a compelling cover letter that is fitting and representative of your experience. Is the key to opening yourself up to new and desirable opportunities that can build your knowledge and give you the chance to speak English.

remember that the reason for writing a great covering letter is not easy but it is essential. Photo Source: Unsplash

But replying to an advert and highlighting your strengths and experience isn’t always easy, even for English native speakers let alone ESOL Students. Writing a response to encourage someone to give you a chance in an application involves planning the letter, organising your experience, making it interesting to read and showing yourself in your best light.

Whether you are writing your resume or your cover letter. You will be required to write these things using excellent English incorporating great spelling and grammar. Here are some tips to help you to get that job interview that you are dreaming of.

Why Write A Covering Letter?

The greeting, the layout, the first sentence, showing your experience and demonstrating your personality are all essential parts of the covering letter. If you want the best chance at being noticed amongst lots of other hopeful applicants, then you cover letter must be convincing.

Many international industries such as tourism and commerce will expect their staff to speak English, especially in tourist zones. Not to mention companies who are actually based in English speaking countries. Speaking English is a strong skill to have on your CV and can bring you to the front of the list for employment if you know how to communicate in English.

Speaking in English can be for many experienced professionals the skill that sets them apart from the other applicants especially in companies which require English speakers but are no based in an English speaking country.

The only way to highlight your fluency in English is to write a convincing covering letter. Your cover letter then is the opportunity for you to show all of your linguistic talents and your other skills. It is a potent part of your application.

The letter must be written in a clear and precise way which highlights your skills and know how. It should also make it clear why any employer should give you a position. You English lever should be clearly reflected in your writing so that the employer can determine your level.

Make A Definite Plan For Your Cover Letter

It is possible to write your cover letter without a plan, but this style is best for people who are strong writers already. Also, people who have experience successfully writing letters to employers and have no issue presenting themselves positively and concisely in writing.

For the rest of us, however, we should put a plan into place which helps to put order into your ideas and ensures that you do not repeat or forget any important details. Thus to start your covering letter, it is essential to establish a writing plan. Cover letters are typically divided into three or four paragraphs or take up one A4 page.

based in English speaking countries The opportunity for you to show all of your linguistic talents. Photo Source: Unsplash

1. Paragraph one – Here you will introduce your interest in the company and a brief introduction of who you are and your education.
2. Paragraph two – Explain what attracts you to the position for which you are applying and which skills you have which makes you a viable candidate.
3. Paragraph three – Describe your experience in detail and how you as a candidate could make a success of the role. Tip: Using the job description as a guide can help you highlight the most relevant skills and experience.
4. Paragraph four – This is the closing paragraph where you can secure your final thoughts, thank the recruiter for their time and invite them to ask you further questions to clarify any questions that they may have.

Tips For Writing Your Covering Letter

It is imperative to know what it is that you want to say in the covering letter and even more so is vital to make sure that you make it easy for the recruiter to understand what it is that you want to say. Once you have the plan ready and have an idea of what your targets are you can start to write and fill in the blanks. Creating more opportunities for yourself in line with the positions that you are applying for.

An excellent tip for the writing part of the process is to write down key terms from the job description that match your experience and insert them into your text while you are creating your cover letter. Once you have written the letter, it is essential to make sure that you edit the content to be as precise and powerful as possible.

Also, you should match the tone when you write your cover letter to the style of the company that you will be working for. If the company is formal like a bank, then your covering letter should be formal, but if you are applying for a casual company like a cool tech startup where people dress casually and are more relaxed, then your cover letter should match that tone.

There is no correct style of writing, but your covering letter should represent you and your experience entirely.

Your English Level And Writing Your Cover Letter

Although it is important to make sure that you have no mistakes and are well understood in your cover letter it is also important to make sure that the cover letter is representative of you and who you are. Essentially if you don’t have the best English, your letter shouldn’t indicate that your English is perfect because when you are interviewed, they will find out any issues that you are trying to hide.

So finding the balance of who you are and what passes for a great covering letter is not easy but it is essential for you to do to ensure that you are authentic in your application. Remember that in most cases the covering letter is the first part of the application and that you will have a face to face interview with the recruiter. In the interview, you will be expected to be the same person that was presented in the covering letter and CV.

But if you find that in English while speaking you make lots of mistakes. It doesn’t mean that you should translate those mistakes into your covering letter, but you should not use words that you would not usually use, and you should, of course, try to correct any spelling mistake and grammar while being authentic to your actual level of English.

A tip for doing this is especially if your English is not the best is to highlight your English level on your CV and mention that you are in the progress of learning and improving. Employers often like when people are engaged in personal development, and this can really help you if you don’t have the best English but plan to study to improve over time.

While writing a cover letter can be daunting it’s not the same as writing an essay. Letters are short and you have to remember that the reason for writing it does not end with the writing, but you have to send it off in the hope that it can persuade an employer to interview you and hire you.

Formatting For Your Covering Letter

The format for your covering letter is necessary because it is the formatting and visual presentation of the letter that will get the attention of the employer/recruiter.

Letterhead

Add some basic personal information here such as your address and contact information.

Date

Date the letter with the long form date as date formats are not the same worldwide. i.e. use 7th September 2019 not 07/09/19

Fonts

Use a basic clear font when editing your letter, fonts like ‘Arial’ are professional and easy to read.

the most relevant skills and experience. Write your cover letter without a plan. Photo Source: Unsplash

Other Tips

  • Address the recruiter by name if you know it or by a formal title such as To whom it may concern if you have no direct point of contact.
  • The job Reference should be quoted if they are shown on the job description to help the recruiter know which job you are applying for.
  • Show your interest in the position at the start of the letter with sentences such as I am writing to apply for the position of.
  • Explain why you want to join the company and why you would be good for the company. Sentences such as I know your products very well and I would love to talk to you about how I can help you increase your international presence can be powerful.
  • Explain your ‘relevant’ experience and skills, for example, a sentence like my skills are an ideal match for this position.
  • End with letting the recruiter know that you are motivated and available for an interview. With sentences like I would appreciate the opportunity to meet you to talk to you in person. A formal closing such as Sincerely or best regards.
  • Editing your covering letter for grammar and spelling is very important at this point. You should also proofread the letter for mistakes, sentences that are too long or anything that is hard to understand.
  • Remove industry terminology from the covering letter, This is ok in the CV, but the cover letter may be read by an assistant or recruiter that isn’t specialised in your industry. If they don’t understand what you are saying, then they may not pass your application forward.

I hope that this will help you in your approach to writing a professional letter in English and I wish you luck with your application.

Learn how to write a dissertation in English.

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