When you’re chasing a promotion, selling your skills to people you already work for sounds simple, but it can be tricky to get across everything you want to with familiar colleagues.
Similarly, if you’re aiming to get a new job with a different company, it’s important to show you’re ready to take the next step up.
Here’s our advice to make your cover letter stand out from the rest.
How has your role improved the company?
This is especially relevant if you’re applying for an internal promotion – really emphasise, with quantifiable figures if possible, what you’ve done to boost the company you’re working for.
Describe the positive impact you’ve had, and how you wish to progress even further and work towards making it even better.
If you’re applying for a role outside your current company, again use quantifiable statistics and statements to show what you’ve done. Emphasise that you’re looking for a fresh challenge in a new environment where you can grow further.
Why do you deserve to step up now?
A good paragraph to include in your cover letter is a specific reason why now would be a good time for you to step up. Is it because you’re ready to take on new responsibilities, or perhaps it’s because you’re excited by the prospect of a new challenge.
Use the cover letter as an opportunity to remind your employer how long you’ve been in your current role.
Don’t waste space listing experience and qualifications
If you already work at the company, then there’s little point taking up valuable space with a long list of work experience dates and qualifications you’ve gained in the past. By all means include this information on your CV, but in the cover letter all you need to do is refer to it briefly. Your current company should know your employment history, so it’s best to concentrate on what you have done in your current role unless there’s something very specific you can bring from a past job.
If applying outside the company, it’s fine to go into greater detail about previous roles, but the emphasis should still be on what you’ve achieved most recently and why this means you’re ready for a step up.
Highlight how soon you can start
One of the benefits of applying for a promotion within your own company is there’s a good chance you can get started right away without need for a lengthy notice period. Your cover letter is a good opportunity to bring that up, with a suggestion that you’d be keen to get started on a new challenge as quickly as possible, while ensuring your old duties are responsibly taken care of.
Show detailed knowledge of your company’s procedures and systems
It’s often preferable to hire someone from within the company as they’ll be unlikely to need as much training, even if the role is very different from your current one.
Use your cover letter as a chance to describe, quite briefly, how well you know the various procedures and systems that you use regularly, how confident you are using them, and how quick you think it’ll take for you to learn and adapt to any new challenges that might arise.
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