The CV, Cover Letter and Interview

To find the job you want, you need to sell yourself. This often is much harder than it sounds. Somehow you need to make your skills, abilities and talents known without coming across as arrogant and conceited.

Your university careers service will often offer workshops to students on how to write successful cover letters, interview tips etc. They are also excellent in terms of helping you to formulate CVs and cover letters if you are stuck. Make sure to utilise these services.

What skills has Economics taught you?

The job application process normally consists of three main parts: the cover letter, the curriculum vitae and the interview (in this order). To get an interview you need a good CV, showing your strengths and abilities. To ensure your CV is read you need a good, personalised cover letter. And then you have to interview well. The pressure is on (I’m not going to mention the downturn in the graduate job market because of the current economic climate, maybe you would like to see our further study section…).

CV’s, cover letters and interviews are always personal and will depend on your experiences, your skills, your options and your success. The best place to gain advice on these issues is your university’s Career Service. They will be able to provide you with information, advice, and proofreading. However, in the meantime, here are a few good sites that could help you:

The CV

Prospects: offers vast amounts of information on many things, from samples to layout and content.

“Graduate CV template: what to include in your first résumé” from The Guardian

“How to Write a CV: Professional Examples for the UK” from career advice site Zety

The Cover Letter

Prospects: advice on writing the cover letter

“How to Write a Cover Letter: A Complete Guide” from Zety

The Interview

Guardian Jobs: lots of information on all aspects of jobs and advice, especially good for interview tips, ideas, and gaffes.

Careers Advice: ‘how to succeed in job interviews’ is the title of this audio from the Government’s Career Advice website.