If you are reading this, you are most probably ‘between jobs’ at the moment. This is not unusual at this time of year and is nothing to worry about.
TV production recruitment slows down considerably between November and end of February every year – this is due to end/start of the new financial year and filters down from the broadcaster slowing down commissioning until they get their new budgets for the coming year. If you haven’t experienced this lull before, then you’ve been awfully lucky!
Being between jobs and the market being slow is no excuse for being unprofessional in your approach to finding your next contract.
The Unit List works hard to extract information from employers on their required criteria for a vacancy. Please ensure you continue to consider whether your personal experience and skillset will match what the employer has requested, BEFORE you apply for the position.
Flinging out the same cut-and-pasted cover email without telling the employer why they should consider you, is a waste of both yours and the employer’s time. Your email could be deleted without your CV even being viewed. Similarly, if you apply to a recruitment advert and don’t have the specified experience and don’t tell the reader why they should consider you, it is unlikely you will be considered.
So how can you get the employer to open your CV attachment? Here are our top tips for successful cover emails that will encourage an employer to view your CV.
REMEMBER: your cover email should sell you to the reader. How will you make THEIR job easier by being experienced and reliable in what you do?
This is not the time to boast about your achievements and what the reader can do for you and your career. They need someone to rely upon in their vacancy, to make their job easier. Can you be that person?
1) Is your email address appropriate for work? email@example.com is NOT professional.
2) Use the employers name if evident. Check you have spelled it correctly. Use ‘Dear Sir/Madam’ if you can’t find any clues.
3) Mention where you saw the advert. They like to know how effective their advertising is.
4) Directly address each point in the criteria and how it relates to your experience, e.g. “MUST have ob doc experience” means that you should briefly mention ob doc programmes you have worked on. If you don’t have the credits or can’t list transferrable experience – STEP AWAY FROM THE ADVERT. This job is not for you and another will be along shortly.
5) List your availability date.
6) Sign off appropriately, with your phone number and showreel (if appropriate) and/or link to website if you have one.