The emergence of online applications by E-mail has been a great development in recent years. The application process is less expensive, more environmentally friendly, and takes less time. In rare cases, applications must be mailed by post. Though in the past, applications by snail mail may have made a better impression on recruiters, most companies today no longer give preference to applications through the post. Mind that if an application by E-mail is specifically requested, you should only send your application by E-mail. (This also shows your recruiter you can follow directions!)
Check it out! We’ve compiled some top tips and recommendations on preparing email applications. With this information you’ll rule the world of online applications!
Click with caution: What you should watch out when applying by E-mail:
You can’t go wrong with a Gmail account. This Google domain also lets you use your Google+ profile to add any additional information. Ensure that your profile is professional and relevant, i.e. that it is aligned with your professional focus.
You shouldn’t have anything to hide. Recruiters have access to your social media accounts with your E-mail address. Have total control over your virtual identity.
The subject heading is less important than you might think. This of course, does not mean that you should put anything down as a subject. State the title and number of the job advertisement, your name and the word “application”. Example: “Marketing Manager Application No. 0124 – J. Smith”.
Include the cover letter as an attachment. Your cover letter should not be copied into the E-mail. It is better to write a short, punchy text for the E-mail. Your E-mail might be forwarded or your documents might be printed out, along with those of 10 other applicants. If your cover letter is only included in the E-mail, it may not be printed out with the others and therefore not considered. So it is important to include the cover letter as an attachment and write a few lines that arouse interest in the E-mail.
Documents in PDF format. Send your documents in a PDF file no bigger than 5 MB, unless stated otherwise. The smaller the volume of data the better. Since your documents will probably be printed out, it would be disastrous to send them as Word files! Word documents such as the cover letter and CV can be easily saved as a PDF file (simply select the different file format when saving). All other documents such as employment references or degree certificates will have to be scanned – between 150 and 300dpi, depending on the number and quality of the documents. When doing so, you should make sure that the documents are not too big but are legible nevertheless.
Get a digital signature. CVs no longer need to be furnished with a date and signature. The cover letter should, however, be signed and a digital signature is best for this. You can of course also print out the cover letter, sign it and scan it in again, but the difference is minimal. Doing this would only unnecessarily increase the data volume. We recommend scanning in your signature and pasting it into the Word document in a prominent place.
Better to only send one PDF file, and never more than two. Depending on the instructions in the job advertisement, it is advisable to only send one PDF file containing all your most important documents: your CV, the cover letter and the most important proofs and certificates. Your proofs and certificates can also be sent in a second PDF file, especially if it is unlikely that these will be printed out. This will save the recruiters some work and some paper.
You don’t need a cover sheet. If you absolutely want to include one, it is of course not a faux pas to do so, but it’s not common practice when applying by E-mail.
Print out documents to proofread. A big advantage of applying by E-mail is that once you have your documents prepared the first time, you can quickly adapt them before sending them to employers. It is, however, advisable to print out your CV and the cover letter from time to time to check for mistakes. And who knows, this way you may get ideas on how you can improve your cover letter.
Send yourself a test E-mail. If you send a number of applications within a certain period of time, the application does not, of course, need to be tested each time. But if you change the text or the order of the documents, a quick review will always be well worth your time.
Don’t use unusual fonts. You should also avoid bright colours and unprofessional signatures. An appropriate signature that includes your full name and all relevant contact details should follow your short text, all in a font that is suitable for you and the sector you’re working in.
Hey! That wasn’t so bad. Now all you need is the courage to click the “send” button!
If you have any more helpful tips, please share and comment below! We would also be happy to add your tips in our article. You’ll find our contact details above on the right.