Cover Letter Checklist

This checklist is designed to help you plan and review your covering letters for jobs and further study.

It will give you all the key attributes that recruiters and course leaders typically seek in a covering letter, allowing you to ensure yours hits the right note and gets you to the next stage.

To print a PDF copy of this checklist, please click here.

Covering Letter Checklist
Introductions Achieved? Comments?
Have you opened up your letter with a concise introduction of who you are and why you are writing? Have you included a job reference code if there is one?
Why they should want you? Achieved? Comments?
Have you identified the key requirements for the job and demonstrated that you have evidence of using these skills and knowledge in the past?
Have you used appropriate vocabulary that is convincing and persuasive and shows your motivation and enthusiasm?
Is this paragraph concise and focused on 3 or 4 key points? (You may need to cover more points if you have been asked to do so).
Why this job role? Achieved? Comments?
Have you conveyed what it is that you would find particularly rewarding about working in that job role?
Have you managed to convey that you have a good understanding of what the job involves?
Have you used appropriate vocabulary that is convincing and persuasive and shows your motivation and enthusiasm?
Have you achieved a good balance between what you will get from the role and what you can offer?
Is this paragraph concise and focusing on 2 or 3 key points?
Why this organisation? Achieved? Comments?
Have you conveyed what you think is attractive and rewarding about working for that organisation and in that sector?
Have you conveyed your understanding of what the organisation does and can offer, over and above the average person?
Have you used appropriate vocabulary that is convincing and persuasive and shows your motivation and enthusiasm?
Have you achieved a good balance between what you will get from working for the organisation and what you can offer?
Is this paragraph concise and focusing on 2 or 3 key points?
Conclusions? Achieved? Comments?
Have you ended your letter in an optimistic way about what you would like to happen next without sounding either arrogant or as though you have too low expectations?
In general Achieved? Comments?
Does your letter have a confident and optimistic tone? Does it sound as though you want the job?
Is your letter shorter than one side of A4?
Have you and a colleague checked it for errors?
Does it link well with your CV, signposting the important parts but not duplicating the phrasing in it?