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I am recently in between jobs and I was applying for a position for this company however I was a little confused about how to write it's cover letter.

The company sent me a list of various criteria on which to base my cover letter on. For example one of the criteria I have to write on is my previous computer troubleshooting experience in a professional capacity.

I was wondering if I should only focus on the criteria mentioned or do I still add my usual "I am very motivated to join your company etc" because the criteria alone is almost 1500 words and if I add my stuff it would become around 2000 words.

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    Where are you located? – Matthew Gaiser Jul 6 at 0:02
  • I am currently based in Vancouver – Master Observer Jul 6 at 0:06
  • "do i still add my usual i am very motivated to join your company" Leave that out, or shorten it. No one reads that part anyway. Just be sure to show your cover letter to a couple of your professional friends before you send it out. – Stephan Branczyk Jul 6 at 0:33
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I would address and answer the criteria questions as they have asked for. I t hink 1500 words is alot. However, you don't need to write a lengthy answer. Try to be succinct and get to the point. Here's some help:

Dear Hiring Manager,

Please accept my resume for the position of (whatever) for XYZ company. I believe my background and skills are a good match for this position and I'd like to answer your questions regarding my work experience:

Previous computer troubleshooting experience: In my past 2 positions, I have worked as a Computer Technician and have 5 years experience with troubleshooting A, B, C, D (whatever)and have tackled over 500 IT tickets during that time period with a 99% solve rate without escelating to the next level.

So in other words, don't get too wordy but show the number of years or times you've done something so they understand your level of experience.

Your last paragraph in the cover letter should be something like this:

I am very interested in the (job title) position and am available for an interview at your convenience where my background and skills can be discussed at greater length. You can reach me at xxx-xxx-xxxx.

Thank you and I look forward to hearing from you.

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My opinion is that 1500 words are too much for a cover letter. I try to keep to one page, two if I really have to.

It's nice to have the stock pleasantries 'I am very motivated etc...' But if space is limited I would just say 'Wow, what a great opportunity!" and leave it like that.

As far as addressing their selection criteria, less is more, be succinct. Someone has to read this and they are probably very busy. So brief and to the point can win through but don't use bullet points unless you really have to. Remember, the CV or Resume can have more detail added to support a certain role type, and I did once include a cover letter and an 'addressing selections criteria' document.

Final word, even without them providing criteria, I would still extract my own from their ad and address the; after all that is what they say they want, so that's what you need to demonstrate.

Good luck with the application

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They are giving you a list of items they want you to discuss in the cover letter. So make sure you do that.

They are also expecting you to be able to craft some additional items around those requirements. So do include some pleasantries, so include additional information that may point out other key items related to why you should move on to the next phase of the process.

They have turned the cover letter into an assignment. But they still want you to include something beyond just the facts.

If you are hitting 1500 words on the required sections make sure that your response to the required parts isn't being too wordy.

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