by Michael Cheary
So you’ve just spent three years or more completing your degree…
You spend hours perfecting your graduate CV, but how long do you spend writing the accompanying cover letter? The honest answer for many, unfortunately, is not long enough.
Teaming your shiny new CV with a half-hearted attempt at writing a cover letter (or worse, not including one at all) could count against you more than you anticipate.
A cover letter is often the first thing a hiring manager looks at so it’s crucial to get it right. As well as letting your personality shine, it’s also an opportunity to stand out from all the other graduate applicants. And remember, first impressions count.
We’ve already covered how to write a cover letter, but if you’re still feeling frustrated when it comes to the finer details, here’s our cover letter template specifically designed for recent graduates:
Just here for the template? Click the link below:
Download Graduate Cover Letter Template
Opening the letter
The opening paragraph should be short, informative and to the point. Explain what job it is you’re applying for, and where you found the vacancy.
Feel free to mention the website by name (e.g. as advertised on reed.co.uk) or, if someone referred you to the contact, mention their name in this section.
I wish to apply for the role of Graduate Commercial Analyst, currently being advertised on reed.co.uk. Please find enclosed my CV for your consideration.
Second paragraph – Why are you suitable for the job?
Briefly describe your professional and academic qualifications that are relevant to the role and ensure you refer to some of the skills listed in the job description.
Stating your degree classification and the name of your university is optional, but will help to build a more comprehensive background for the reader. And, if any specific qualifications have been mentioned as pre-requisites, stating this now will help confirm your credentials.
As you can see from my attached CV, I have recently completed a three year degree in Economics at Loughborough University, attaining a 2:1, and I believe the knowledge and skills built up during this time make me the perfect candidate for the role.
Third/Fourth paragraph – What can you do for them?
Use practical examples to emphasise what you can do for the company. These might be performance based (if you have some relevant work experience), but will most likely be focussed on your academic career.
Always make sure your examples are as specific and pertinent as possible. If you’ve completed particular modules which may be applicable, this is the point to include them.
It’s also a good place to include any extra-curricular studies or activities which are applicable to the position, or which help reinforce your skills. Examples could be particular books you’ve read around the subject, seminars you’ve attended, or any qualifications undertaken which are outside your degree.
Other examples include outlining your dissertation (e.g. ‘achieved a first class distinction grade in my dissertation on x’), or more quantifiable achievements you may have attained whilst in previous employment or during work experience (e.g. ‘Increased revenue by x%’, ‘drove x% more traffic to the website during my time in employment’, ‘an increase in students grades by x’ etc.)
The position particularly interests me because of my passion for Analytics. During my course, I studied topics such as Econometrics, Accounting & Finance and International Economics, and the mathematical and modelling skills learned from these modules have given me an excellent foundation for building a career as a Commercial Analyst.
Aside from my degree, I have built upon my interest in this field in a number of ways. Recently I have completed my dissertation on architectures for data-intensive analytics, which allowed me to put my theory for the subject into practice. Further, I have also started an online analytics course, which has given me a much more rounded view on the subject.
Fifth paragraph – Reiterate
Here’s where you reiterate your interest in the role and why you would be the right fit for the company.
I am confident that I can bring this level of expertise with me to your organisation and help Online Retail Company LTD build upon their reputation as one of the biggest brand names in the UK. Add to this my passion and enthusiasm for analytics, and I believe my contribution will have an immediate impact on the business.
Closing the letter
Thank the employer for their time. It is also a good opportunity to indicate you’d like to meet with the employer for an interview.
Sign off your cover letter with ‘Yours sincerely’ (if you know the name of the hiring manager)/’Yours faithfully’ (if you do not), and your name.
Thank you for your time and consideration. I look forward to meeting with you to discuss my application further.
Remember: Just as with our standard free cover letter template, this is a template, not a ready-made cover letter. Without the proper research into the company advertising the vacancy, and without tailoring it to the role, it will lack the impact for which a cover letter can drastically improve your chances of reaching the interview stage.
And these words hold even more importance when it comes to graduate jobs. Putting the time and effort in to each one will pay dividends, so keep at it. The more research you do and the better written it is, the greater your chance of standing out from the graduate crowd and setting yourself apart.
Still searching for your perfect position? Have a look at all of our current vacancies now
Business analyst cover letter
View this sample cover letter for a business analyst, or download the business analyst cover letter template in Word.
As a business analyst, you know the power of information and how it affects the decisions you make. Your cover letter will help shape a hiring manager’s opinion of you as an employee. To be considered for top business analyst jobs, your cover letter must demonstrate your skills and experience, as well as your passion for business. For writing tips, view this sample cover letter for a business analyst, or download business analyst cover letter template in Word.
Additionally, you can learn about business careers and look for business analyst jobs on Monster.
Business analyst cover letter template
Sometown, IL 55555 | (555) 555-5555 | firstname.lastname@example.org
August 10, 2017
Ms. Katherine Collins
55 Great Lakes Blvd.
Sometown, IL 55555
Re: Business Analyst, Ref. #12345, Advertised on Monster
Dear Ms. Collins:
When I read ABC Corporation’s advertisement on Monster for a business analyst, I decided to apply immediately. Data-driven and highly analytical, I bring to the table 15 years of experience as a business analyst able to influence corporate growth strategies through fact-based, data-driven insights and analysis.
Since earning an MBA, I have worked as a business analyst for a mid-size supermarket chain, a financial services organization and a global pharmaceutical company. In each position, I planned and directed analysis of complex initiatives ranging from proposed mergers, acquisitions and divestitures to Six Sigma-based process improvements, organizational restructures and product launch proposals.
Areas of success include:
- Producingdetailed analytics and actionable reports that show key performance indicators, identify areas of improvement and facilitate informed decision making.
- Minimizing uncertainty, removing ambiguity and synthesizing large amounts of complex data into clear, concise and meaningful contexts.
- Leading system and process reengineering to capture improved efficiencies, fail-safe business continuity and multimillion-dollar cost savings.
- Conducting in-depth data mining, visualization and analysis to uncover and rectify process weaknesses and vulnerabilities, mitigate risk and resolve business and IT
As you can see, I am committed to being a positive driver of company goals and confident in my ability to improve ABC Corporation’s operational performance. I am available to interview anytime and look forward to speaking with you. You can call me at (555) 555-5555 or email email@example.com. Thank you.
“Phoebe provided analytics for overall business performance and future forecasting that enabled a 16% increase YTD.” – B. Macy, President, DEF Company
“Phoebe has a keen ability to analyze and identify complex and competing business requirements across business functions.” – A. Palmer, GHI Company
“The analytic support and strategic thought partnership delivered by Phoebe and her team were key to our successful new product launch...” – B. Tam, JKL Company
See all sample cover letters on Monster.