The best written cover letters are worthless if no one sees them!

British Cover Letter Writing Guide

Work abroad sounds like an adventure to many people. However, work in the UK (United Kingdom) needs more than just the obvious British cover letter and British CV writing and translation - it requires thorough preparation. You will be forced to solve problems that probably did not even cross your mind when you decided to apply for British jobs.

Do not take to lightly the huge influence the British cover letter can have on the results of your adventure! For instance, you will experience the different immigration rules and practices, strange job application procedures, weird selection trends and unusual management culture.

You need to accept that not knowing the English language will put you at real disadvantage from the local job seekers. The basic knowledge of English is considered necessary to cope with daily office life and life outside work.

art_attention British Cover LetterMost of companies in the United Kingdom use Job Application Forms instead of letters. Standard questions cover education, training, work experience, hobbies and personal interest. Pay attention to the open questions that try to establish your social and transferable skills. Never leave any blank spaces.

art_tip British Cover LetterPresentation of your own CV, rather than the filling in of an Application Form, is usual.

Your British cover letter is the very first thing an employer will see. Under most circumstances, a cover letter is used as an introduction and should accompany your CV, whether e-mailed, posted on a job site, mailed or hand delivered to an employer. A personalized, targeted, well-written cover letter is your chance to set yourself apart, grab the employer's interest and draw them in for a closer look at your CV.

The British cover letter is an integral part of your job applications. It should refer to your present and future plans, showing your prospective employers what you want to do now and what you will do for them in the future.

Often the British cover letter is more important to employers then the accompanying CV because CVs refer mainly to the past time with exception of your present job, but employers are interested mostly in the future of companies they represent. Therefore, concentrate on your present and future plans, showing your prospective employers what you want to do now and what you will do for them in the future.

It is common to send a one page typed cover letter with your CV.

Begin your British cover letter with your name, nationality and contact information including your address, phone/fax and e-mail. Often cover letters and CVs are kept on file for long periods, so any contact details you give have to remain accurate in the long term. A daytime phone number with international access code and e-mail address are most important.

The British cover letter should be business-like and typed in a short and professional style using power words and action verbs. Usually it contains three or four paragraphs. So, be concise and get to the point as quickly as possible. Break any paragraph, which is longer than seven lines, into short easily understandable one.

The letter should be addressed to a specific person. Take the time to research every employer's organization and personalize each letter with a real person’s name. Such personalization would increase retention of your application. If you do not know to whom you are addressing your job cover letter, you may begin with "Dear Sir/Madam" and finish with "Yours faithfully".

Explain your motivation and why you are the right candidate for the job. Illustrate your skills with examples. Do not overestimate your qualities, since this could offend the British sense of modesty. Use instead a straightforward, respectful tone and illustrate, wherever possible, particular skills with examples.

Finish your cover letter formally with a sentence expressing your willingness to explain your application in more detail during a personal interview.

It is becoming more common to attach photos to job application letters. Some companies specifically ask for it. Only include one if asked for.

art_remember British Cover LetterCheck the spelling and grammar of your British cover letter. Use the word processor's spell and grammar checker. If you are not confident of your ability to detect grammatical, punctuation and English or other language usage errors or if you need help in organizing your cover letter, send it to a professional for assistance.

If you have a difficulty with your British cover letter writing, instead of staring at a blank piece of paper, use:

Other British Cover Letter Info

We hope that your British job search has been successful. So, if your British cover letter and British CV are ready, you may email them to your future employers, apply for British visa with British work permit and start preparing for British job interview.

In addition, on the international info, job searchvisa & work permit, job interview and dress code pages you will find many useful tips for overseas job seekers.

Good luck with your British cover letter!


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