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Job application letters

If you can capture the employer's attention at the beginning they are more likely to read your resume/selection criteria or request an interview. Therefore, it is important to write a clear and concise application letter. The tone of the letter should imply enthusiasm and confidence to gain their interest. The application letter is also an administrative tool for employers, allowing them to rapidly know who you are and why you are writing.

Writing your application letter

Before you start writing your letter:

After you have written your application letter use an Application letter checklist (PDF* 65KB) to ensure you haven’t forgotten to address anything.

Online applications

When you are submitting an online application it is important to take the same amount of time and effort you would for a written application.

The following tips will help you lodge an effective online application: 

  • always write a short cover letter, rather than just simply emailing your resume
  • ensure that you read the application instructions carefully and make sure you follow them correctly 
  • use your name and the job title as the ‘subject' of your message
  • note that the employer may have a different system and if you are unable to find out always use an appropriate email address 
  • before sending your application you may like to email it to a friend to see how it looks on another computer.


*This file is in Portable Document Format (PDF) which requires the use of Adobe Acrobat Reader. A free copy of Acrobat Reader may be obtained from Adobe. Users who are unable to access information in PDF should contact the Manager (Career Development), telephone +61 4531 5308 to obtain this information in an alternative format.