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Applications, CVs and Covering Letters


Applications, CVs and Covering Letters. Nicola Sutherland. Careers ... London E4 6SZ Tel: 020 8332 9816 4 Arden Walk. Fax: 020 8332 9900 Stockport SK1 1PT ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Applications, CVs and Covering Letters

Applications, CVs and Covering Letters
  • Nicola Sutherland
  • Careers Advisers

The Career Service
  • 166 Nethergate Opposite Tower Building
  • Open Mon, Tues, Wed and Fri 9am 5pm
  • Thurs 10 am 5pm
  • Drop In or Make An Appointment
  • T 01382 384017
  • E

During the session we will
  • Examine your skills and discuss how to evidence
    them in application forms.
  • Look at how to create an effective CV.
  • Find out how to write a concise
  • Covering Letter.

Closing Dates
  • Apply asap even if the closing date is in June
  • Internships fierce competition, a good way to
    secure grad job, will close before Christmas.

Your Skills
  • Employers Interested in Skills they show you
    can do the job.
  • Use the Job Description Person Specification to
    Identify Skills Required.
  • They NEED to be TAILORED to Reflect the Skills
    Needed in the Role.

(No Transcript)
How To Evidence Skills
  • Look at the skills listed on the Skills Audit
  • Do you think you have some, most or all of these
  • Think about ALL areas of your life activities,
    achievements, experience, not just academic
  • Think about how you can evidence the skills you

  • Develop a Soundbyte of your evidence for it.
  • A short sentence or two explaining your evidence
  • Use only positive language. Be concise!!!
  • Example Team Work Skills
  • My part time role as a waitress has helped to
    develop my team working skills. When we have
    been busy or short staffed, Ive contributed to
    the team by carrying out additional roles to
    ensure a smooth service to customers.

  • S Situation
  • T Task
  • A Action
  • R Result

Typical Application Form Questions
  • Give an example of a time when you
  • have gone that extra mile.
  • Why have you decided to apply to
  • What is your biggest achievement to date?
  • Name a Scottish firm you are interested in and
    what service would you provide them with?
  • Where do you see the future of
  • Give details of a time when you have successfully
  • worked as part of a team, what role did you
    play and
  • what did you achieve?

What Not to Write!
  • I am someone who knows my own destiny, but I have
    no definite long term plans
  • On an application for an accountancy position - I
    was closely involved in every aspect of my former
    company, right up to its bankruptcy
  • Here are my qualifications for you to overlook
  • Suspected to graduate early next year
  • If called to interview I would like to discuss
    the salary, pensions and sickness benefits
  • From a student member of a sky diving club -
    dealing with fear and being able to follow orders
    under terrifying conditions

  • Keep Answers CONCISE
  • Ensure you Answer the Question
  • Use STAR
  • Check your Spelling
  • Dont Copy and Paste in other Employer Names!
  • Get Someone to Look Over it
  • Dont Leave it till the Day Before the Closing

What is a CV?
  • Literally means a Record of Life
  • Your personal marketing tool.
  • Shows the recruiter that your skills and
    attributes meets their requirements.
  • Must be focused on and targeted to each

10 Deadly CV Sins
  • Poor spelling and grammar (77)
  • Exaggerating or lying (34)
  • Poor presentation of CV (31)
  • Non-targeted CV/Covering Letter (19)
  • No relevant work experience listed (19)
  • No Covering Letter with CV (14)
  • Hand written CV or application (11)
  • No evidence of extra-curricular activities (10)
  • Incorrect/incomplete details for referees (10)
  • Statements in CV not supported by evidence (8)

Source Univ. of Hertfordshire Survey of 500
Golden Rules For Finance CVs
  • Ensure it is achievements/evidence focused.
  • Use lots of action verbs.
  • Make sure you quantifying everything you claim!
  • Focus the CV to the job/sector.
  • Ensure it is short maximum 2 pages of typed A4.
  • Avoid long paragraphs use bullet points.
  • Be consistent in your style.
  • Include only RELEVANT information.
  • Dont use Abbreviations.
  • Avoid gimmicks.
  • Include a Covering Letter

Different Types of CVs
  • 2 Styles of CV
  • Chronological CV
  • Skills Based or Functional CV

Chronological CV
  • Lists by date - most recent first
  • Easy to organise - uses bullet points
  • Shows progression
  • Maybe not suitable for those who have changed
    jobs frequently or those who have gaps in history

Chronological CV Example
1993 2000 Stockport High School June 2000
A-levels History (B), Mathematics (B),
Geography (D) June 1998 GCSEs 8 subjects,
grades A-C including Mathematics (A), French
(A) WORK EXPERIENCE October 2001 Present
Glebe College Students Union, Position Team
Member (shop) 8 hours per week Work under
pressure to a high level of accuracy, while
maintaining good customer relations. Summer
2001 Direct Northern, Manchester Underwriting
Assistant Strengthened spoken and written
communication skills for business. Dealt
efficiently with the public and improved IT
skills. Summer 2000 Tesco, Stockport Sales
Assistant/Accounts Assistant Handled large sums
of money. Adapted to different roles at short
notice. ADDITIONAL SKILLS Word processing and
spreadsheets used ongoing in course work
Computing and during work experience. Gained
ECDL (European Computer Driving
Licence). Languages Have maintained French
since GCSE through annual grape-picking visit
there and attended Spanish classes since last
year. Driving Licence Full clean UK
Grade 7 enthusiastic member of several informal
groups. Successful time management to combine
music with study and part-time
employment. History Society Elected Membership
Officer (2000) Contributed to 20 rise in
membership over previous year Jointly managed a
budget of 1,200 and negotiated sponsorship from
the local newspaper. Referees Dr Jane Macintyre,
Lecturer in Ms Barbara Smithson Modern History
(Tutor) Assistant Personnel Manager Glebe
College, 283 Mile Post Lane, Tesco Stores Plc,
London E4 6SZ Tel 020 8332 9816 4 Arden
Walk Fax 020 8332 9900 Stockport SK1 1PT Email Tel 0161 910
  • Email
  • Term Address Home Address (from 10/6/03)
  • 483 Mile Post Lane 63 Smithsonian Street
  • London E4 6DZ Stockport SK3 2DJ
  • Tel 020 8862 3580 Tel 0161 963 4420
  • Mobile 07957 232148
  • CAREER OBJECTIVE An enthusiastic individual with
    an interest in moving into management training
    which will allow further development of my
    leadership and communication skills. Committed
    to working in a fast moving environment, which
    will provide challenges.
  • 2000 - 2003 Glebe College, University of London
  • BA Modern Contemporary History
  • Due to be awarded June 2006 Expected result
  • 2002 2003
  • Final year - Main Courses World War II Campaigns
    and Leaders
  • Italian Cities since 1950s
  • 2001 2002
  • 2nd year - Main Courses The Rise of Fascism in
    the 1930s.
  • France Political Parties in the 5th

Skills Based / Functional CV
  • Highlights your skills and achievements - rather
    than work/education history
  • Shows you have considered recruiters needs - and
    how you might meet them
  • More difficult to organise
  • Needs to convey what is relevant concisely

Skills Based CV - Example
  • 2000 - 2003
  • University of North Birmingham BA (Hons)
    Combined Arts in English and
  • German (2.2 expected).
  • (2001 2003 SOCRATES programme)
  • 1995 - 2000
  • Allinton Comprehensive 3 A-levels - English (B),
    History (C),
  • German (C). 8 GCSEs.
  • 2002 - 2003
  • Aquasports Ltd. Rotherham Shop assistant and
    acting shop manager during
  • summer vacations.
  • July-Sept 2000
  • Camp America Camp counsellor to 11-19 year-olds
  • summer vacation.
  • Email
  • D.O.B 12.01.80
  • 25, Vicarage Close 23, Pershore Road
  • Rotherham Edgbaston
  • South Yorkshire Birmingham
  • Tel 01709 333333 Tel 0121 444444
  • (Home Address) (Term Address)
  • A keen individual seeking a career in
    International marketing or Market research.
  • excellent verbal and written communication skills
    and the ability to relate to a wide range of
  • people. I am capable of achieving personal
    objectives as demonstrated by successful
  • of my degree and my commitment to work experience
    activities. I have displayed ambition and
  • goal orientated performance within my studies at
  • Communication
  • Good communication skills gained from giving
    presentation at seminars. Issuing clear and
    concise instructions to suppliers, chairing
    meetings and dealing with customers tactfully and

CVs Should Include
  • Biographical Information
  • Personal Profile/Career Objective
  • Education
  • Work Experience
  • Responsibilities, Achievements, Interests
  • Additional Skills
  • References

Biographical Information
  • Name
  • Contact Details
  • Date of Birth
  • Nationality
  • Gender
  • Marital Status
  • N.I Number

Career Aim
  • Optional
  • Focuses CV
  • A succinct statement of your goal/direction and
    your most marketable skills
  • CV Aim Graduate Trainee Retail Management
  • Good understanding of sales and marketing,
    gained through 4 years part-time work at the
    Carphone Warehouse, as well as final year project
    on marketing and consumer behaviour
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal
    skills, as demonstrated by
  • role as Secretary of University Debating society.
  • Commercial awareness, appreciation of customer
    care and understanding of retail purchasing
    demonstrated in additional responsibilities at
    the Carphone Warehouse. Have developed a keen
    awareness of business environments through my
    final year project

  • Reverse Chronological Order
  • Concentrate on Higher Education
  • Allocation of space denotes importance
  • Give details of RELEVANT aspects, e.g. modules,
    dissertation etc

Work Experience
  • Reverse Chronological
  • Relevant and Additional
  • Detail skills used and highlight relevance to
    job applied for
  • Use I not We

Interests Achievements
  • Space to list skills not already listed
    elsewhere, e.g. personal characteristics
  • Can include positions of responsibility, awards
    scholarships gained, leisure activities
  • Keep it brief and RELEVANT
  • Be specific dates etc

Additional Skills
  • Do not include if repetitive
  • Mention Languages, IT Skills and Driving Licence
  • Ensure it is Brief Factual

  • At Least Two
  • 1 Academic, 1 Employer
  • Ask permission keep informed

Covering Letters
Purpose Essentials
  • Link your CV to the particular job
  • Introduce your CV
  • Direct your letter to the correct application
    and person
  • Highlight your strengths and Unique Selling
  • Mention administrative points, e.g. availability
    for interview
  • Keep it brief max. 1 side of A4
  • Well presented, typed document
  • Check thoroughly for spelling and grammar
  • Use Your sincerely and Yours Faithfully
  • Address to a named person where possible

Covering Letters
Include all addresses, i.e. if you will be moving
home after a certain date.
Write to a specific person - name, job title,
etc. If not possible, specify title/ depart
  • Your Address
  • Employers Name date
  • Address
  • Dear.
  • Heading (if appropriate)
  • Main Text
  • Why you are writing
  • Why Organisation/role?
  • What you can offer the employer - give evidence
  • Administrative information. End Positively
  • Yours..
  • Signature
  • Your Name

A Heading - such as Marketing Assistant Vacancy
- can show the reader instantly what the letter
is about
Dear Mr. Mrs, Miss or Ms (if unsure) Otherwise D
ear Sir/Madam
The ending depends on how you began - Dear
Mr.Yours sincerely Dear Sir..Yours faithfully
It is a good idea to type your name legibly
beneath your signature
Covering Letters
  • Introduction
  • Why you are writing
  • - to apply for a CA training position with
    Henderson Loggie
  • Where you saw it advertised
  • - as advertised on the ICAS training

Covering Letters
  • Why the Organisation/Role?
  • Target the application.
  • Why are you applying to the organisation?
  • - What impresses you about the organisation?
  • - Their reputation? Their clients? Type of work?
  • Why do you want this post?
  • - Does it match your interests, skills

Covering Letters
  • Why You
  • Highlight the best bits of your CV the parts
    you really want the selectors to read
  • 3 or 4 of your best skills, experiences and
  • Remember to match to the job specification

Covering Letter
  • Ending
  • Be positive confident
  • Offer to supply further details or invite
    contact with referees
  • Show eagerness I look forward to meeting with
    you to discuss my application further

Thank you
  • Any Questions?
  • Useful Websites
  • http//