As for the majority of positions in the UK, the standard method of application for Business Analyst jobs is with a CV and covering letter.
A cover letter is the ideal place for you to explain a little bit more about why you want the role you are applying for, why the company you’re applying to appeals to you and why you think you are the ideal candidate for the role. Your CV is a very factual document, however your Business Analyst cover letter is your opportunity to convey a little bit more of your personality and highlight attributes that might not fit in the rigid structure of a Business Analyst CV.
Business Analyst cover letter format
Ideally you should aim to keep your Business Analyst cover letter reasonably short, one page of A4 is a good length. Try to keep in mind as you are writing that hiring managers are pushed for time and will often be inundated with CV’s and cover letters to read so you need to make yours easy on the eye and interesting to encourage them to read it all properly. The recommended format is to stick to 3 paragraphs as this is an easy to read format that helps you write in a succinct manner.
As the opening to you application, this paragraph needs to be kept quite brief. It should contain mention of the job you are applying for (to avoid any confusion) and also where you found out about the job before leading in to a brief introduction to yourself. This brief introduction should be a top line about your character and a short summery of your experience. For example: “Business Analyst with 10 years experience in the IT industry”.
The second paragraph is where you really sell yourself.
This paragraph should make up the main body of your Business Analyst cover letter and is where you get the opportunity to explain why you think you are the ideal candidate for the role you are applying for.
It is important to really think about what skills the role requires and how you can demonstrate you possess them before you begin writing. Keep the job description to hand so you can keep referring to it and try to uses as many good “real life” examples as you can, as this not only provides evidence of your skills but also makes your cover letter more interesting and gives a fuller idea of your personality to the recruiter.
You can also use this paragraph to demonstrate your knowledge of the company you are applying to, and highlighting why you would like to work for them.
Your closing paragraph should sum up your application. Take this chance to re-iterate the key elements of your experience and personality that make you ideal for the role.
Business Analyst cover letter layout
Cover letters are a traditional application method and so there are a few key elements that a recruiter will expect to see. Most of these are included in the layout of the cover letter. You should:
- Include your address, email, phone number etc in the top right hand corner
- Include the company details in the top left hand corner. If you are applying to a recruitment agency put their details but make sure your reference the company and position you are applying for clearly.
- Address the recruiter formerly (i.e. Dear Mr Smith). Try to avoid “Dear Sir/Madam” if possible as it can make your application look generic.
- Before you start writing, include the job title and any reference number of the job you are applying for.
- Including bullet points is perfectly acceptable.
- Always check for spelling and grammatical errors.
- Ask friends and family to proof read your Business Analyst cover letter and ask them to offer feedback.
- Keep the styling (i.e. font etc) in line with your Business Analyst CV.
You can round off your cover letter by saying that you look forward to hearing from them in due course, however, it is often deemed rude to specify a date by which you expect to hear a response so we would advise against doing this.
Cover Letter Tips for Business Analyst
Finding jobs as a Business Analyst means putting to use a certain set of job seeking skills while keeping the right mindset. The tips below will help guide you during the important process of finding work.
1. Stay positive. Most importantly, a positive attitude will help keep things in perspective and remind you that your unemployment is only temporary. You might consider joining a support group and connecting with others in the same situation.
2. Make a job search plan for yourself. Breaking down the process into goals that can be accomplished on a daily or weekly basis will maximize your productivity. For example, you might try to send out a certain number of cover letters per week.
3. Keep an open mind. Although you might be looking into a specific field or industry, keeping your mind open to other options will allow more opportunities to come your way.
4. Network, network, network. Don’t hesitate to reach out to any individuals that could offer insight into the job market. Their advice will be valuable, and you never know where your next lead could come from.
5. Use social media. Make use of websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, as they can help expand your social network.
Business Analyst Job Seeking Tips
When it comes to finding jobs as a Business Analyst, your cover letter plays a crucial role in making an excellent first impression of you. Keep your cover letter in top shape with the tips below.
1. Don’t exceed two pages. Unless you are a doctor or academic using curricula vitae (CVs), there is no need to write more than two pages. Keep your cover letter relevant and concise.
2. Always align the text flush left and use bullet points for listing items. These formatting standards will significantly improve the readability and organization of your text.
3. Avoid using generic language. Overly used expressions, such as hard working” and detail oriented” will detract from the originality of your writing.
4. Introduce your work history section with a Summary of Skills” section. This provides your reader with an overview of your professional qualifications.
5. List your work history section in the following recommended order: title of position, employer, city and state of employer, and employment dates.