CVs and cover letters

CVs and cover letters

You can apply for most of our vacancies by filling in our job application form.

However, sometimes we may accept a copy of your current CV and a cover letter instead of completing the application form in full.

What is a CV?

A CV (short for Curriculum Vitae) is a document that summarises your best qualities as they relate to the role you are applying for.

A typical CV shows your work history, academic background and key skills. You can add other sections to your CV if they are relevant to the position, such as achievements, interests and hobbies.

If you don't already have a CV you can use our template below to prepare one. Remember to include details that are relevant to the vacancy you are applying for.

If our documents are not accessible to you, you can request a different format here.
CV Template Word (Word 52 KB)

Cover letters

Cover letters are sent in alongside a CV (where accepted) or a job application form.

A well written cover letter should work in harmony with your application form or CV to highlight why you are a good fit for the role.

Do I need to do any research?

Any research you do can be weaved into your cover letter demonstrating your interest in the council and the post. With basic research you can match your skills, knowledge and experience to the job description and person specification and become aware of the council's values.

How should a cover letter be structured?

The cover letter should be equivalent to around one page of A4 long, and no longer than two pages of A4.

The opening paragraph should outline why you are applying for the position and where you saw it advertised.

In your second paragraph explain how your skills, knowledge and experience match the job description and person specification. Provide examples of how you have gained the experience and have used it in previous roles. Share any additional detail that is not in your application form or CV, or expand on something that is particularly relevant to this role and might set you apart from other applicants. Include actual results you have achieved rather than vague statements.

Next you can explain why you are interested in this post, and say why you want to work for Chesterfield Borough Council (you could refer to the research you have done for the application).

In the final paragraph, briefly summarise all the above points and state your desire for the post. You want the reader to be interested in hearing more about you, and to invite you for an interview.

This is also an opportunity for you to share your availability for an interview, and state any dates or times that you are not available.

Finish the letter with ‘Yours sincerely’ if you have addressed the letter to someone by name, or ‘Yours faithfully’ if you don’t have a name to send your application to.

Is there anything I shouldn’t do?

A common mistake is not tailoring each cover letter to the job which you are applying for. Try not to ‘copy and paste’ the same letter as it will be too general, and mistakes can be made.

Don't be tempted to overstate your abilities, experience or qualifications. You will be questioned on them at interview and may have to explain and expand on your personal contributions, skills, and experience.

Last updated on 01/03/2024