David Silvorman, entrepreneur, executive director, author and blogger at Harvard Business Review, says: “I have one basic philosophy in relation to the motivational letters: do not worry! Better don’t overthink it, copying or fill it with unnecessary details. “
In our experience as consultants and specialists in the recruitment field, we, from Horizons Bulgaria, face the challenge to identify the right and motivated candidates every day. In the following lined we are going to share our impressions, advices and recommendations on the topic.
” How long a cover letter should be?” – We often receive this question from candidates. The recommended volume of the motivation letter is one page. The shorter and tighter, the better. Mind the content quality – the value of the information is important, it should be meaningful, not general words. Measure thrice, cut once – the proverb sounds very actual. In our case – check several times before finalizing and sending the cover letter. Do not forget that you have the opportunity to make a good first impression of your future employer only once.
We recommend you to review and match the cultural specifics of the company in which you are applying – take into account the nationality of the company and what requirements are valid for the job applications.
Our professional advice is to pay attention to the following characteristics in the letter:
The motivation letter is not aiming to summarize your CV or to paraphrase it, but to spark interest in the employer to screen your CV. The cover letter is your personal presentation. Think about how to link your professional experience with your personal qualities and the contribution you can give to the company. That’s what employers expect to hear. Avoid phrases such as “I want to develop in …”, “I want to learn new things …”, “I want to work for a company which …”. These statements say you expect to “consume” without being clear what you can offer.
Keep in mind that templates are recognized and do not make a good impression on recruitment team. Write a different cover letter to accompany each application. This may be difficult, but if you do it, the results will be available soon.
One of the most common mistakes is the use of such templates. Avoid repeating your CV – with such letters we face every day and they do not catch attention. Do not be trivial, be creative – this will make you remarkable and closer to interview invitation.
Sometimes we received motivation letters with a discrepancy between the content and the application. For example – candidates who have not researched the company and the position very well are applying for it. So, there is a mismatch and it leaves the impression that the candidate is not really interested in the position.
Do the research when you are invited for an interview because you may have been called through a recruitment agency. You may have an amusing situation when you tell the interviewer that you will be very happy to be part of their team and you are a nuclear physicist. J
If you do not have an opportunity or do not want to deal with this, it is wiser to skip this step. Remember – the cover letter may be a good addition to your job application, but at the same time – it may be harm.
Authors: Desislava Georgieva, Recruitment Consultant, Hristina Ivanova, HR Consultant and Dimitrina Dimitrova, Digital Marketing Specialist