Application letter – my little guide: preparation, parts and delusion

Finally you have found a job offer that sounds really good. It sounds so good that you want to have this job easy. Must have! But how does one of the cover letter? It is only the cover letter that stands between you and the job interview.

You think: Yes, I sit down and write it right now. Only provide more water and chocolate chip cookies, vent and the chair back deal. But now. Or not. The empty white document stares one on and you do not know how to start.
Now comes Remedy, I am so often been in this situation, so I know exactly what it feels like and why you would like to pass on my experiences and tips .

How it goes to – preparations for the applications:

Before you do anything else, should one read job offer exactly , from top to bottom. It sounds trite, but it is very important.

Sometimes small tasks’ hiding the fact that you should always observe (eg subject line should be xy, send your application to Mrs. xy, describe your idea of the role xy).

job application letter

Then researched it as much as possible about the company in which you want to apply (website, blog, Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin / Xing, press / media, friends / family, etc.).

If possible, we tried also the product and making notes thereto. This is not always possible, but where it goes, it should be done. Finally, one has to work against in any manner in the range of this product.

And as the last step of preparation is seen to his resume carefully. What parts should change and adapt ? If you add something? Of course you can look at the end of the resume also.

I do it rather at the beginning, because it also helps me to complete the application form (I can speak a bit of it abschauen). It is important that its adapts CV for each application. Why? An example : I have collected both experience as a product manager and as a Customer Support representative in my last job.

If I apply for a job as a product manager, where it is important that you can work well with designers and developers and is familiar with Scrum and other agile methods, then I must point in my resume that I already with designers and developers a team was working and that we have applied in product development Scrum and I am so familiar (best I describe then briefly how we applied Scrum). But when

I apply for a job as a Customer Support representative, I should address this in more detail in my resume and describe the tasks I had exactly and what system we have used.

Here it is not so important, whether in product development Scrum has been applied for the job that is irrelevant.
So you should always just look where to put the focus and which areas and objects to describe in more detail.

Application letter

Parts of a cover letter:

1. Personal salutation of the responsible person (if possible, one should seek out a name!)

2. Mention at which point it goes and where you found it (as the reader knows immediately what it’s about and can also assign, are about which channel you encountered the company)

3. A mini-pitch why exactly is the / the right for the site (convince the reader as quickly as possible; Note: A pitch is a very brief but concise presentation of key information)

4. detailed description of the skills, knowledge and experience in relation to the requirements in the job offer (do not forget this part of structuring sense for the reading is easy)

5. Mention what you have everything on the attached email has (CV, references etc.)

6. Statements – Description how much you would be to get to know each other personally soon (I once wrote in a Food Delivery Service that I’d like to meet the person responsible for a coffee and have offered that I the coffee directly from their service order to a certain place. another time I wrote in a geolocation service, they should send me a link to the place where I wish to place the call.

It’s always good when making a reference to the company and shows that is committed to address it).

The personal touch – this is not a separate part, but this personal touch is very important. One should give his application a personal touch. You as a person should shine through. Perhaps you bring your reader even once to smile (human resource managers are only human and must daily read countless letters).

3 delusional about the applications:

* It only takes a moment to write an application

I do not know where this misconception comes, but some seem to believe that it is possible to write such a letter of application very quickly. And Job Search is anyway only from lying on the couch and click on job sites around.

I agree. No, Job Search is a full time job and it costs an incredible amount of energy and brains to write a convincing cover letter. It is better you put a lot of time in a letter of application, the skin from the stool the reader when you write quickly 10 cover letter, all sound the same and not tailored to the sites.

I have posted a total of ‘only’ ten cover letter, but was invited to six interviews. Not a bad cut, right?

* You can use one and the same cover letter for each application when it suits some

I would not do that. The reader noted, if you have not written the application specifically for the job but they simply copy paste ‘is. Often it is not enough to customize the cover letter a bit.

It can happen that it’ll bumpy sounds when only some tinkering it. I have made the mistake of my penned in English in the original letter of application to translate and only marginally adjusted send off. Well, since I would rather have again started from zero and written in German a new one.

* The more phrases and buzzwords, the better, because then it sounds professional

Why do you want to work there? I want to broaden my horizons. And how would you characterize yourself? Teamwork, ambition and creativity. Then come to us in the young dynamic team! That sounds right individually and convincing, right?

No, try as little phrases and buzzwords as possible to use. HR managers read day after day (perhaps for years already) cover letter. You again and again read the same. As job seekers, it is tempting to be based on sample applications.

It is believed if one keeps these apparent standards, then you come professionally over and will be invited for an interview. But conversely land such generic applications rather on, Sorry-no ‘pile, because the reader can not make an accurate picture of the candidate simply.

If all candidates write about the same, use the same words and have a similar qualification and none stands out, then decide any details (such as formatting) of invitation for an interview.

I hope these tips help you first ever when writing your cover letter. In mynext post I’ll describe you the most important steps to the finished cover letter .

What tips you still have about cover letter? Just comment below this post!

Important : This post is contrary to my experience and is no universal guide on how cover letter should generally be . Depending on the industry, company and experience level, there are different requirements on a cover letter. Here I describe you how I did it for my area. I mainly in (tech / software) I applied for startups and jobs in the product.

10 steps to the finished application letter

You have a job offer and found exactly this job you need to have easy.Now the cover letter must be written only. Here we go:

1. Preparation of the “work” environment:

Search ‘you can take a quiet place where you focus yourself.Something to drink would not be bad. Laptop is charged or is infected, and Stickies are ready. Complete all irrelevant tabs and windows. And even if it is hard, put ‘your phone away.

I must admit, I’m leaving not like from my phone, but writing goes faster when I’m not distracted by incredibly exciting news. There are even apps  ( and this ), a reward, if one does not attack his cell phone (or punished if you do it)! So much to prepare. Here we go.

2. Read over the job offer exactly by

Read the whole job offer completely once. So you get a feel for the company and the job.

What is the title of the job offer?
(I almost applied for a job in marketing, although I do not know much about it have, just because I have not read the title carefully. The description sounded so good that I have overlooked that it was basically marketing)

How has the company? Describes
(Do you feel that you will fit in? It sounds exciting and interesting for you?)

Which tasks and activities would be transferred to you? How detailed are described?
(Did you start like immediately if you read the description of the tasks? Can you imagine day after day to keep you busy with these tasks?

Can you think may have solutions described challenges one? Do you know how to the tackle tasks do? Do you see yourself already in place his hands deep into the matter?)

What are the requirements to the candidates?
If you meet at least the main requirements that usually are at the top? Can you from your previous (professional) experience out prove that you meet the requirements? Or you can prove in any other way that you will get the job done well? (eg job as Social Media Manager, you have but so far no experience in this area -. as you can still show that you can do that Take ‘unpaid care of the social media channels of an organization A friend of mine has exactly for done a small nonprofit organization and has learned a lot from it.)

What does the company?
Some companies offer their employees some really cool things such as membership in the fitness center, free tickets to events, opportunity to bring the dog to the office, daily free breakfast, free lunch, chef cooking for the whole team, Team -Events, training, massages, beauty treatments, payment of expenses for Öffi card.In addition, they also offer quite useful things as a company’s own nursery or occupational retirement provision.

What is the content?
In most cases, can already be deduced from the content, whether it is a junior or senior position and how much experience is actually required. If only the general content specified we however do again heavy with the assessment.

Work – it is an easily accessible for you place or would you even move there?
(I would have advertised almost for a job in another city because this job has sounded so good and had my profile fit very well, but move I would have. then do not want to.)

Application Information
To whom shalt thou judge the application? What should you all send (CV, references etc)? As you shall send (via a PDF?) What is the Application Process from? Shall you meet a small task? What does the company have all of you and know? How should read the subject line of the e-mails?
If you do not really pay attention here and not there so makes as specified on the company, you end up faster than you think on the, Sorry-no ‘pile.

3. Perform a  search on the company by

Visits same time the company’s website. Click all points on the touchline and Carry you a few notes thereto. What is the company’s mission, which is the objective? What are they up to?What is the main task? Test ‘read everything they reveal about their work and activities.

What is the team? What they write on their blog? Have social media channels on which to find more information? What is important to you? Do you understand fun?What they employ currently? How they present themselves on Linkedin / Xing?

You discover a name to which you sent your application can? Are they present at events where you can get to know the staff? The company was on review platforms such asGlassdoor or kununu rated? Are there articles about the company in the newspaper / online? What might know your family or your friends about it?

4. If there is a product, try it out!

Meet the product know. Test it through its paces. Mach ‘some notes about improvement (what would you like to improve, and why). And about things that make them particularly wellComparisons want to impress on the competition if you want to be particularly well informed and your interview partner.

5. Mach ‘your resume fit for this job offer

This point I described at some length in my last post. Here again: Which parts of the resume you should change and adapt ? If you add something? Of course you can look at the end of the resume also.

I do it rather at the beginning, because it also helps me to complete the application form (I can speak a bit of it abschauen). It is important that its adapts CV for each application. Why? An example : I have collected both experience as a product manager and as a Customer Support representative in my last job.

If I apply for a job as a product manager, where it is important that you can work well with designers and developers and is familiar with Scrum and other agile methods, then I must point in my resume that I already with designers and developers a team was working and that we have applied in product development Scrum and I am so familiar (best I describe then briefly how we applied Scrum).

But when I apply for a job as a Customer Support representative, I should address this in more detail in my resume and describe the tasks I had exactly and what system we have used.

Here it is not so important, whether in product development Scrum has been applied for the job that is irrelevant.
So you should always just look where to put the focus and which areas and objects to describe in more detail

6. preparations have been completed, now it’s that to write!

That was quite a lot of preparation and still is not a line written.On the one hand it’s frustrating when you put so much time into a single application. But then again, if you really want the job and you want to let the recruiters that also feel you need a bit more time and effort put into the job. I need quite a long time until I can Submit application. But my average is not bad for I have sent 10 applications and has been invited to six interviews.

Here are once again the parts of your letter (as I see it, this is only my view of things and how I approach a cover letter):

  • Personal salutation of the responsible person (if possible, one should seek out a name!)
  • Mention at which point it goes and where you found it (as the reader knows immediately what it’s about and can also assign, are about which channel you encountered the company) If the company is easy, you can do that too playful. For example, I wrote, I want to be xy’s Product Manager. (I will post one of my cover letter in one of my next posts and describe why I like what made, maybe you can look abschauen something)
  • A mini-pitch why the / the right for the site is accurate (convince the reader as quickly as possible; Note: a pitch is a very brief but concise presentation of key information) For example, I wrote: The five key facts why you shoulderstand hire me ‘. And with respect to the tasks and requirements I described why I’m exactly the right person for the job.
  • More detailed description of the skills, knowledge and experience in relation to the requirements in the job offer (do not forget this part of structuring sense for the reading is easy). Okay, that’s one of the most important parts. How to handle the at best?

Go ‘through again the activities and requirements. Look ‘on your resume or rummage in your memory – as you can for the most important tasks and demands prove that you can cope or has it? (I once applied for an Education Startup and completely forgot to mention that I have two years mentor / tutors / language assistance to children with an immigrant background was so, because it was so long ago. In the interview, there have interviewers but addressed immediately and wanted to know exactly what I did there and how).

What professional experience you’ve collected? What tasks did you have there? What projects have you as supervised?What responsibilities did you have for what? What was the cooperation of the team and how it was put together?

Did you do in your spare something for the job Relevant? Have you visited conferences or workshops or you trained in a different way? Can you required skills online evidence (eg portfolio, blog, etc.)? Can you derive something from your hobbies?

very concrete and detailed consideration attempts to meet the requirements. An example: One of the main tasks is testing the products, the reports of errors and the ironing out the error. In this case, I thought about how I best bring over that I did that day in my previous job.

So I wrote a whole paragraph about how I tackled the testing, about which systems errors were reportet and how the process of troubleshooting looked. So the reader can get an idea of whether I have the required experience and the necessary knowledge.

  • Mention what you have everything on the attached email has (CV, references etc.)
  • Statements – Description how much you would be to get to soon know personally. (Let ‘words as would and could be way you want this interview and so it does not have to also sound So I’d appreciate your feedback coupon.!. : I look forward to hearing from you or even more extreme: I can not wait me to plunge into the work)!
  • The personal touch, the WHY, the feeling! Forget ‘not to give your cover letter a personal touch. The reader should get an idea of who you are. He should know that you are exactly the / the right for the job and the company. Do not try to use too many clichés and buzzwords. Perhaps you bring your reader even once you smile, then you have almost won it.

7. Let someone proofread your cover letter

Even if you are sure that you have not made a mistake, let read ‘someone your text. Maybe you have overlooked a typo or after long around plants to the text, he might sound weird at one point.Man feels the same safe, if one has obtained feedback.

8. Do not forget attachments

Nothing is more unpleasant than when you have to send on a second email within the meaning of, Sorry, I forgot to attach my resume. ‘

9. Submit and check that the cover letter has left the Outbox

10. List: Where did you when advertised & state of affairs

Thus, and even though I have written many cover letter and tried here reinzupacken everything I have learned here, I have determined forgotten something! Please write a comment below, I look forward to read from you!

Important : This post is contrary to my experience and is no universal guide on how cover letter should generally be . Depending on the industry, company and experience level, there are different requirements on a cover letter. Here I describe you how I did it for my area. I mainly in (tech / software) I applied for startups and jobs in the product.

The Other 5 Application Tips – attention instead of just sending your resume

How do I get to be perceived as a candidate? I need to pull on me attention of human resources managers of a company . But it is rarely easy to send in only the CV and wait for a response.

Companies receive daily mountain of applications, resumes and cover letter. Unfortunately, paper or e-mail and PDFs can not “Here!” Shout, push to the front and convince the recruiters of their candidates. The readers usually do not know the candidates and the candidates can only hope that the reader can convince enough of the lyrics.

Or is the thing a bit different to when you really want a job . One must FIRST attention of human resources managers (or other employees) catch and only when the contact is established, they send (invited) his resume. Five tips on how you could do that, come here:

5 Application Tips – attention instead of just sending your resume

1. Find someone who recommends you!

Easier said than done. But maybe you’re somewhere a good rapport in the company. As with many things like you rely on advice from the familiar, so even when hiring new people. Will you recommend from a Internal company, you get more of a chance you imagine at least once.

2. They Meet personally and talk to them!

Is there any event where you could people get to know this company? If yes, then go for it. Attempt to come to talk with them and let casually drop what you can not all the territory of the advertised post. Maybe mention your enemy, that they indeed random search just someone who can exactly should! 😉 Or you it doing less offensive and leaves a positive first impression, to which they can remember when they receive your application by referring to this encounter.

3. Show ‘on Twitter & Co, that you care for them and their subject!

Make the most of Twitter  as to show a mouthpiece and to what you care about . Share interesting articles and blog posts or quotes andcomment on tweets of other people. And follow the company in which you want to apply yourself. Reply to their tweets, add interesting links and input. So you’re going to at least the social media supervisor a term and he will look at your Twitter profile. Make sure he there something exciting place!

4. Use their product and give them feedback on!

You want to apply for a company which is a location-based game created or a thermostat? ‘Of their product and write them constructive feedback. Try writing’ them, what would you why improve or change. So you show that you know what they are working, what is at stake and that you are ready to bring you and your ideas. This lifts you before of some other candidates from, believe me!

5. Tell ‘what you’ve got in your area – you exactly what they need!

The easiest way is, you start your own blog or exploited another medium on the web, to show what you can do. You want to promote yourself as a copywriter? Be that! You want to work in the marketing department of a photobook manufacturer? Fang ‘to photograph and überleg’ you how to make people aware! You want SEO Trainee be?Optimize your blog so that it for a particular keyword is right at the top in the search results.

My 19 Application refusals openly – jobs that I did not get and the reasons why

In this post, you can read my application rejections, so you can see: You are not alone! Nearly all job seekers are confronted during their search with one or even several application rejections. I sent during my intense job search time countless applications (e-mail), but responses or say but better yet: refusals, I got much less.
(Note: I studied psychology, but did not, classic psychological ‘professional take)

My application refusals – jobs that I did not get and the reasons why:

Cancellation only by e-mail, no prior invitation to talk:

  1. Associate Administration  at a very young company. I get such a friendly rejection email that I want to play here: “I am sorry to tell you a negative answer – from a simple” luxury problem “for you: you are overqualified for this position simply and could you from today view offer any position that allows you to progress in jobs. “
  2. Online Marketing Analyst at small, specialized consultancies: I applied for an already occupied site, I could think of me already, since the bid was very old. But I have got a very nice email with the question, if I might wanted to do an internship. I immediately said yes. Waited two weeks, but no answer. (Yes, I would again have to ask!)
  3. Management Internship : There was a time out problem from my side, so I was not in the inner circle of candidates. But I got very friendly, personal e-mails during the application process.
  4. Doctoral student at a large company in the Technology Research: Friendly Email an assistant that will forward the e-mail. This was followed by a standard rejection *
  5. Web Developer Trainee  at very small, young company: I applied, even though I had absolutely no experience with software development. I wanted to learn how to program and tried my luck. I thought a “trainee” brings you the necessary knowledge already at. But understandably, they were rather surprised at me and told me on the ground: basic knowledge of programming would already be necessary for the job.
  6. Administrative Assistant in a research institute with a very interesting area of research. Unfortunately not, because I was overqualified (In the rejection really was the word “overqualified” I was disappointed that I could not work there anyway..)
  7. Intern Research national and EU research projects : I was called and I was told that I am on the shortlist. Within weeks, I would know if I had been chosen. The caller that way, I have missed the first time around and then called back, sounded very annoyed. I have for this call never heard back from the company.  (Yes, again, I would have had to ask again!)
  8. Forecast Planner & Sales Support  at large industrial group: Standard Cancellation *
  9. HR Assistant at larger companies: Standard Cancellation *
  10. e-business development at large bookstore: Standard Cancellation *
  11. Floor analyst at a large company in the food sector: Standard Cancellation *
  12. Researcher range Integration : Standard Cancellation *
  13. Junior Consultant health promotion : Standard Cancellation *
  14. Personnel development with greater agency Standard Cancellation *
  15. Publisher assistant in scientific publishing: Standard Cancellation *
  16. Assistant Administrator for firms in the research: Standard Cancellation * with the reason that they had opted for a different candidate.

Despite personal interview no commitment:

  1. Medienauswerterin for national and international media: I was invited to a test. After that I was invited to a personal interview. Despite very friendly entertainment and the feeling that it really had to work, I have after the conversation never heard back from the company. (I could ask, but just found it so strange that they gave me not even canceled after two invitation. I wanted then also no longer work there.)
  2. Personnel Consultant / Research Specialist : I had a very pleasant and detailed discussion with the manager of the personnel consulting firm. He explained to me that one must also be seller needs and the customer can sell a found candidate as a personnel consultant. I was simply too little saleswoman for the job. After that was resolved, he advised me yet how and where I could apply myself. Very nice indeed!
  3. Media Planner / Junior Research Manager : I was invited to an interview, which was very pleasant and funny again. Mir were asked brainteasers and mental arithmetic tasks. After I had it all solved correctly, the two men and I came into the chat. About two weeks later, but then came again a rejection. I was among the last two candidates, but they had opted for the other.

Especially under 1st-16th mentioned reasons are the ones that everyone had heard before. Already at the beginning of an e-mail, you can smell it, the standard rejection. And if a company has actually bothered and individual rejection writes, which is indeed a little encouragement for’s ego, but not really what you would like to read. The actual reasons for application refusals remain a fact almost always a mystery . It would help a yet so, if you know what you can do better next time. Why write a not anyone the truth? There are probably even more, but those are the2 main reasons for this :

  1. Some companies get thousands of applications a week (!) And simply can not write each individual rejection.
  2. Once again legal reasons : As companies can be sued if they discriminate against someone, write a precaution a little meaningful reason.

If you want to really know what was the reason, call the competent person and ask you for it. Important However that is that you do not directly ask for the rejection reasons, but then what you could do better .

* Standard Cancellation = so in style “Unfortunately not, but a lot of success and all the best for the future career” If you’ve ever wanted to know how loving such a nice standard rejection can be summarized

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