Getting a cover letter ready demonstrates your seriousness and professionalism with regards to the job you apply for. This also gives you the chance to make a good impression to as many potential employers as possible.
If you are interested to strike the deal there itself, get ready with two kinds of cover letters: general and personalised. Including your resume is advisable as it increases your chance of scoring an interview.
Personalised cover letter:
1. Study and evaluate through the job fair's list of confirmed employers that interest you. Review their website and if one of these employers is in retail, visit their store. Skim and select three to five employers that interest you. Plan and draft a personalised cover letter to each one of them.
2. Make use of job search websites to find out if each employer is recruiting for specific positions that interest you. Once you come across one, look through that advertisement carefully and take notes on which specific qualifications that job requires. Note down the key skills, attitudes or experiences the employer values in its employees. As you refer to your resume, think about where your experience and skill overlaps with each employer's needs and commitments.
3. Pick a business letter format or customise one yourself. Choose a clean, legible font no smaller then 11 point and set the document margins at 1 or 1 1/2 inches.
4. Address each cover letter to a specific person or people expected to represent each employer at the job fair. In the case where no name is listed, address your letter to "Hiring Manager.' Begin with a unique opening paragraph in each letter that briefly introduces you to each potential employer. If you know of a specific job opening, express your interest in the position and explain why you think you are qualified for it. Briefly elaborate on any direct experience you have in a similar position.
5. With the notes made and your resume, draft one to two short paragraphs describing three to four of the experiences that can prepare you for the job you seek at each particular employer. Think of the experiences that suggest your unique skill and highlight qualities such as leadership, teamwork and organisational skills. Similar examples can be used across your personalised cover letters. Go the extra mile and let your cover letter speak directly to each employer. Relate your experience to specific information such as the employer's needs or priorities.
6. As you conclude, write two to three sentences stating that you look forward to hearing back from the potential employer. Indicate your availability for a phone or in-person interview and your intention to follow up by email or phone within two weeks.
General cover letter:
7. Browse and choose a professional template for your cover letter or customise your own. Set the document margins between 1 and 1 1/2 inches; pick a simple and clear font no smaller than 11 point.
8. Address your letter to Hiring Manager. In your opening paragraph, thank your employer for meeting with you at the job fair. Briefly explain the type of work you are looking for, either in a position such as a sales associate, web developer or state your interest in one of a few different roles.
9. Draft one or two paragraphs highlighting significant work or other experiences that prepare you for the kind of work you are looking for. Make use of concrete examples to highlight your skill set and qualities such as leadership, teamwork, organisational skill and enthusiasm that most employers value.
10. Conclude your letter with a brief and simple paragraph expressing your availability for a personal or telephone interview. Also, state your intention to follow up via email or phone within a two week timeframe.
Check out Singapore’s biggest career fair happening this weekend. It’s all happening at the STJobs Career Fair.
With your cover letter nailed, here are some Interview Tips which will help you ace that interview at the career fair.
For more information, visit www.stjobs.sg/. At STJobs, your ideal job isn’t hard to find.