As I write this, there are people walking the streets of cities, towns and business parks, dropping in or handing in copies of their CV’s / Résumé’s or they are hitting the send / submit button to organizations who have not requested it from them or who have not advertised an open job position or who have no vacancies. Most times these CV’s / Résumé’s are not even read; they go in the bin or they are deleted. The attitude most times from them is, ‘Not another CV!\’ How can you let people / organizations know that you have skills they need and that you are looking to use them in their organization to help them make money or save money without using a CV?
The answer is by using a Target Letter.
A Target Letter is a letter tailored written to an organization who you want to let know that you are looking for employment with them, even though they have not advertised an open position. It is a letter that is sent to the Manager / Director of the Department / Area you want to work in. It is not sent to Human Resources (HR). HR only get involved when a post has been actually advertised and needs to be filled. Sending Target Letters, even CV’s to HR Department can work, but they do not always work. You want to do things as part of your job hunt campaign that ‘always work’.
The Target Letter can be written in different ways and formats. The best way is a one full page letter, structured and designed that it is easy for the reader to read and tells them all the information they need to know in order to make an informed decision whether to meet you or not, preferably the former. The letter should contain a table summary format telling the employer what they need and what you have to meet these needs. It should contain Bold, Underlined and Italic font so as to make the page more appealing and interesting to read. The Bold fonts are usually the important bits. It is always written to a person (name and job title and department spelled correctly) and signed in blue pen if being posted or a blue signature if being emailed.
Do you post or email? For many people, receiving a letter in the post is still a respected and cherished activity. They see that the person (you) have went to the trouble of putting pen to paper, printing it, addressing it and posting to them. When they get it by post, they are more likely to read it in more detail than an e-mail and that it is only one page…not a a three or four page CV. It is still perfectly fine to send your Target Letter by email too as an attachment or as an email, the latter being probably more effective and easier for the reader (some people don’t like opening attachments as they could be corrupt and they take too long to open.