Cover letter writing is an art. Here’s how to do it well and win the job.
Cover letter writing is a task few people enjoy.
You’ve already spent hours working on your resume and now you’ve got to go through and find a more creative way to tailor all that information into a letter to your prospective mining employer.
If you aren’t a natural and practiced writer, it can be really daunting.
So, here are seven top tricks to writing a great cover letter that will give you the best possible chance of landing an interview. Three of these tips will help you with writing structure. Four will help you stand out from the other applicants!
1. Know who you are writing to
Always add the name of the person who will be reviewing your letter.
If you don’t know, do not (we repeat, do not) write “to whom it may concern”. If you can’t find out (after many hours of research) the name of the person who will review the cover letter, then write something like “Dear Project Engineer Hiring Manager”.
Always tailor the greeting to whoever will be reading the cover letter.
2. Say which mining job are you applying for
The introduction of your cover letter should immediately mention the role you are applying for.
Be specific. Highlight the role you are after and what you found interesting about this role. Here’s an example:
“I wish to apply for the Electrical Engineer position with the global gold producer, XYZ Resources.”
Taking a small detail from the ad, rather than just copying and pasting the job title, shows that you are paying attention and not just taking an “apply for everything” approach to your applications.
3. Say why you are the perfect candidate
This is your opportunity to link your “pitch” to the job advert. You want to succinctly say why you’re perfect for the role.
- Include any relevant skills and experience you have
- Say how you align to their company culture
- Briefly mention times you’ve worked with other companies or teams which are similar to theirs.
4. Be professional without being formal
Gone are the days of “Dear Mr So-and-so, I wish to extend my great interest in position XYZ”.
People want to work with people they relate to, so it’s vital to appear human. Be professional, but also be yourself.
5. Format your letter for the online world
We no longer write physical letters. This means you often have to contend with incompatible computer programs that threaten to mess up your format. Here’s a simple hack: convert your cover letter to a PDF so that everyone can read it as you intended.
6. Include the right keywords
Resumes and cover letters are now submitted electronically. This convenience has also simplified the way recruiters and hiring managers filter through applications. This is little-known by job applicants, but recruiters and hiring managers will often use keyword searches to scan resumes and cover letters for words and terms related to the vacant position. This is a quick and simple way to identify the most relevant applications to review first.
So, keep this in mind when you’re writing your cover letter (and your resume) and be sure to include relevant keywords (popular or common terms related to the kind of role you’re going for and the work you do) to your cover letter.
For example, an application for a position as an Electrical Engineer should include terms like “electrical engineer”, “gold”, and “PLC control system”.
7. Seek help
If you are new to cover letter writing and aren’t confident enough to do it yourself, get help. The great benefit of working with a mining recruitment agency, like MPi, is that we can take the cover letter writing burden off your shoulders – and help you to land the perfect mining job!
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