Most people, at least once in their lives, have changed the direction of their professional
activities. Sometimes a change of profession occurs at the person’s own will and is caused
either by the emergence of a new dream or by the need for serious challenges. Often,
especially in times of economic turmoil, career changes occur in response to changes in the
industry through introducing technology and automation, which leads to job cuts, too much
competition or lack of future prospects and difficulties in finding jobs.
In general, a request for a career or career change is not something out of the ordinary. People think about this at the age of 20, and at 40, and at 60. As Paula Poundstone (American actress, comedian) said, “Adults always ask children what they want to be when they grow up because they are looking for new ideas.” What you should accept as a fact, It’s okay to try something, and then to want to try something else. But what’s even harder to realize is that the opportunity to try new things, and even so you also paid money for it, is always there! Thus, let’s begin with your new resume and a short cover letter for a career change.
How to Write a Cover Letter for a Career Change
When you will change your professional activity, it should prepare you because you will have to start a new career from a lower position and with a lower salary. But if your present work does not make you happy and you feel that, you are no longer ready to do, for example, bookkeeping, then a slight deviation back will give you a lot in the future.
Nevertheless, if you decide to change the scope of your activity radically, you will need to
work on the cover letter.
First, doing your favorite activity, you will enjoy the work. A new direction is always new knowledge, which gives us additional energy and the brightness of life. You can use that in your letter.
Second, when you find your calling, you are completely satisfied with your new job, then it will be much easier to make a career. In fact, those who are engaged in what they love according to their internal recognition make a quicker career. You will want to do your job 100%, you will enjoy it, all this will affect your mood, appearance, the atmosphere in the team which will not slow down your increase in your salary. All the above can be mentioned to explain your desire to change your direction.
So what should the cover letter transition to a new career look like?
Any letter begins with a personal greeting. It is very important to include the name of the addressee you are contacting in the cover letter.
Examples of calls if the recipient’s name is not known:
- Dear HR manager of the company “X”!
- Dear personnel department of the company “X”!
- Dear employee of the recruitment department of the company “X”!
- Dear X Personnel Recruitment Manager!
- Dear employees of the recruitment department of the company “X”!
- Ladies and gentlemen!
In the first paragraph indicate what position you are applying for and also explain where and from whom you learned about this vacancy.
Why? Prepare 2 answers:
- Why is this industry/sphere attractive to you? Why are you interested in this field of activity/specialization/area?
- Why is this particular company attracting you? Why do you want to get this job in this company? Do a company research to get a better idea of its organization. Go to the company’s website, look at the articles in the press and find interesting facts.
Why are you?
Why are you exactly suitable for this job? Write all the reasons why you are perfect for
this vacancy. Focus on what you can offer them. In your cover letter for switching careers
you can tell about your dream job, about your decision to change your life and about the
reason why. Write about your job-matching achievements and career change reveal and make an
The answers to each of the three questions “why” should be approached in the context of each specific company/vacancy. Only in this case, your changing careers cover letter will not work stamped.
Rules for Writing a Career Transition Cover Letter
- There are the most common mistakes when writing cover letters for a career change:
Failure to comply with the rules of business correspondence:
Examples of failed calls:
- Good day!
- Dear HR!
The information presented is abstract
(there are no position names, areas of activity, skills, etc.). There is no answer to the question: Why should this particular candidate be of interest to this company?
90% composed of water.
Mark Twain’s famous saying is: “I would have written shorter, but I did not have time.” The authors of these texts clearly did not have enough time to compose their work. There is an inverse proportion to time and quality: the more time you spend, the better the cover letter will be.
Contain clerical words and pattern phrases.
Watch out for the clerical words! Do not create formless and vague cover letters that contain empty, dead words. Stamp words say nothing. And, of course, not a single HR manager will want to continue reading such template letters. Let each word in the letter be in its place!
Repeating the same words.
How do you like this example of a job description: “We are looking for a person to work with work experience at work”? This is how the text of most unsuccessful cover letters is perceived.
The use of numerous pronouns:
I, me, mine, my, etc.
“I love,” “I adore,” “I like,” “I am developing with pleasure,” etc.
Expressing your thoughts:
“I think,” “I believe,” “I am sure,” “It seems,” “I can confidently say,” etc. These unreasonable subjective statements and personal opinions are more annoying than impressive, so it’s necessary to give examples and evidence.
“professional,” “best result,” “possess pronounced leadership qualities,” “I work actively and effectively,” etc.
Lack of structure:
no division into paragraphs/numerous paragraphs, a set of single sentences without a logical sequence.
According to statistics, 56% of cover letters contain grammatical errors, and 91% of HRs consider this type of errors unacceptable.
Career Change Cover Letter Sample
We have already told how the employer sees your feedback on the vacancy. First, he flips
through brief information from the resume: experience, age, education. And then he opens the
document completely if he noticed something interesting.
An empty resume will not interest the employer: he has no reason to open it and read the cover letter. But the response of a worker with an interesting experience, albeit in another area, can be hooked. And in this case, the cover letter is your main assistant. Briefly and clearly explain why you are ready to work in a new profession. Tell about the steps that have already been taken in this direction: what courses you have passed, what projects you have done on your own, how you worked on freelance or did an internship.
Please have a look at a sample cover letter for a career change position:
Vacancy: SMM-manager in a chain of household appliances stores.
My name is Steve Green, I am an applicant for the vacancy “SMM Manager”.
Over the past 10 years, I have been working as an assistant manager, secretary and translator. I became interested in SMM six months ago, when I realized that I was ready to change my professional path - I wanted a more stable work schedule, less dependence on the leader’s schedule, while leaving room for self-realization and independent decisions. The idea came by itself: I realized that my accounts on social networks are popular, even with little effort on my part.
For six months I have been studying theory, remaining in constant work, and experimenting in practice. I graduated from SMM courses organized by the marketing agency “Idea!” (3 months of training). I have created three experimental groups: on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and used the knowledge I gained to increase attendance and activity in groups. The last contest held in the group on Facebook gave an increase in the number of community members by 500% and increased the number of daily visits by 250%.
Thanks to my past work, I am well versed in household appliances from different manufacturers; I understand the values and needs of the target audience. This knowledge will allow me to get up to speed and establish effective communication with the customers of your chain of stores.
I am ready to provide more detailed information about myself in a form convenient for you.
Thank you in advance for the time devoted to my candidacy.
Regards, Steve Green
The set of advantages, achievements, personal qualities that should be noted in the cover letter is determined individually for each applicant: there is no specific set of universal advantages that will convince the employer of the applicant’s value. Think about what your strengths are - taking into account your knowledge, experience (professional and life), personal qualities, goals and values - try to connect them with the requirements of the vacancy and write about it in a cover letter.
Mistakes To Avoid When Change in Career Path Cover Letter
GetCoverLetter made a list of some awesome and productive tips for your changing careers cover letter:
1. Create a new resume
The most common mistake that most jobseekers who change their field make is that they use their old resume. You should reframe your resume for a specific vacancy that you want to respond to, emphasizing the skills and experience most suitable for your new job. It is important to use keywords and special terms from the vacancy in your resume. Also, pay special attention to the reformulation of duties so they correspond to the job description.
2. Choose the correct cover letter format
There are two formats suitable for those who change their field of activity: combined and functional. Such cover letters focus on skills rather than experience. They are ideal for those who decide to build a career in a new field. You should briefly list your experience at the end of the text in reverse chronological order, without describing in detail your job responsibilities that are not directly related to the new position.
3. Focus on skills
Make a list of the professional skills that will be most interesting for the HR manager and include them in the cover letter. Remember that at each job you also master soft skills that can be applied both in another position and in a new field. For example, the ability to manage time, leadership skills, team player, communication skills, and problem-solving skills are welcome in any position. Present yourself as a person with transferable skills.
4. Don’t forget to add courses and trainings
Include the additional education that you received to move into a new field to demonstrate that you are using every opportunity to develop the necessary skills. For example, if you are an assistant accountant and want to become a graphic designer, include examples of your work in the resume, and also list the software courses that you took. You must show serious intentions to master a new profession.
5. Do not be afraid of gaps in experience
Candidates with no experience will have qualification gaps. However, keep in mind that only a few candidates are 100% eligible for the vacancy. Many employers prefer to hire those who are 80-90% fit, they can be at the entry level but these candidates are full of enthusiasm and desire to learn. Therefore, do not worry that you are not 100% fit for this job. Focus on your strengths, showing them in the most favorable light.