Avoid these four common cover letter mistakes


Use your cover letter to show the employer you can meet their business needs.

Advertised job vacancies often attract many applicants. To stand out, you need to show the employer that:

  • you’ve read the job ad closely and
  • you genuinely believe your skills and experience make you the right person for the job.

A good cover letter will encourage the employer to read your résumé.

If you want to make a good first impression with employers you should avoid these common cover letter mistakes:

  1. Calling the employer or business by the wrong name. It’s an easy mistake to make! This is a risk if you are sending out lots of applications and using previous cover letters as your starting point.
  2. Not personalising or tailoring your cover letter. Lots of job seekers send the same cover letter to every employer. However, many of these generic applications end up in a recruiter’s bin.
  3. Spelling and grammar mistakes. Having no mistakes in your cover letter demonstrates to employers your attention to detail and the care you took in writing your application. Employers aren’t perfect either and you will find job ads with spelling mistakes. That’s no excuse for not striving for a mistake-free cover letter. Always triple check your application before sending it out.
  4. Not explaining how you would fit within the business. Review your cover letter from the employer’s point-of-view. Employers want applicants who understand them. Be clear about what you have to offer and how you can meet their needs.

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