Speculative cover letters

When writing cover letters, the most common mistake made, is the applicant telling the potential employer what they think the employer wants to know, rather than responding to what the employer has asked for.  So what do you write in a cover letter when you are approaching a company where no job has been advertised, i.e., what do you write in a speculative cover letter?  One useful approach is to go to online employment, career and recruitment sites and search for jobs that match your existing job title or the job title for the type of work you are seeking.   Don’t just look at one or two, look at least a dozen, if not more.  Note the qualifications, training, licences and key selection criteria that are most commonly sought across these jobs at this time.   Match the results to those that are reflected in your knowledge, skills and experience and which you can provide examples or proof of. Now write your letter focusing on their mostly commonly sought requirements matched with your qualifications and background, remembering to keep your letter succinct, preferably one page in length, but no more than two.

Applying for mining positions …

question-mark-96285_640Applying for mining positions ?  Do you have numerous cards, tickets and licences?  Many of the online application forms require you to upload copies of your qualifications and licences, so it is a good idea to scan them all and keep them on file, otherwise you can get caught out in the middle of an application form that doesn’t allow you to save as you go.  Tip | if you have numerous cards with expiry dates that you have acquired through internal training within a company, e.g. Exxon Mobil (Esso Australia), scan them separately so if any of the training expires, you only have to re-scan the cards from that company and not the lot.

Driver’s Licence on your Resume?

dashboard-1856_640Have you included your driver’s licence on your resume? If not, why not? Is it a case of just forgetting to, or is it thinking that it is not relevant to the job you are applying for?

Even though a reason to include it isn’t obvious and the job advertisement doesn’t state the need for a driver’s licence in the selection criteria; should you include it in your resume anyway?

Yes, is my resounding answer, it is a good idea to include it? Why? My experience is that even though it is not always stated in a job advertisement that a driver’s licence is required, sometimes ‘current driver’s licence’ are keywords entered into an applicant tracking system which is used to read applicant resumes and eliminate those not meeting the job requirements. Check your resume to see if you have included your driver’s licence and if you haven’t, weigh up whether it may be wise to do so.

Are your licences and training current?

kuwait-80674_640As part of your job application process, it is very important, that before you finalise your resume you carry out an audit of your licences and training.
If you have worked for large companies in the past or currently work for a contractor working for one of the larger companies, you may have participated in organisational specific training.  Much of that training carries an expiry date. Many of you will also hold a WorkSafe licence in various classes related to performing high risk work. If you hold one of these licences, you need to remember they are usually only valid for five years from date of issue and have an expiry date detailed on the card. There is a requirement to renew the licence if you are to continue performing high risk work.
I know many of you think that your licences and training are up to date, but quite often that is found not to be so. When did you last check through your cards? Has WorkSafe sent you a renewal notice which you have not received because you didn’t let them know you have moved?  Have you lost any of your cards? Is your First Aid training up to date? Have you done a CPR renewal? Is your organisational specific training still current or has it expired?
When it comes to developing your resume and making job applications, it is absolutely vital that the details surrounding your licences and training are true, correct and up to date, so get those cards out and start checking!