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Cover Letter Advice

Preparing Cover Letters


When preparing to write your cover letters make sure you have researched the firms VERY WELL. For your research you might want to look at each firm:

  • Core Values

  • Key Cultural Traits

  • Key Management Figures

  • Financial History/Performance

  • ESG/Social/ Philanthropy

  • Recent Deals

  • Recent News


Create a Template

Cover Letters can take a really long time to perfect and to write. In order to make sure that you do not have to waste time writing it is best to create a template that you use AND ADJUST for every firm. However, DO NOT use the same cover letter as this will lead to immediate rejection. 

Your template should consider:

  • Brief Intro to you (your uni, how you were introduced to the firm, etc…)

  • Why you are interested in that division

  • Why you are interested in that particular firm 

    • This has to be the main focus as you have to link your values and experiences with that particular firm to make sure that you seem a cultural fit
  • Brief conclusion summarising and expressing why YOU should be chosen compared to the thousands of other applicants

Don't Make Mistakes

It is crucial that in your cover letter you do not make silly and stupid grammar and spelling mistakes.

Some key tips for the finalizing and reviewing stage:

  • Use Grammarly to check 

  • Ask your friends/family to read through and have a look

  • Re-read several times until you are happy with it then re-read, print off (to check the layout), and re-read one final time

  • Make sure you name the pdf something suitable to your application

Cover Letter Structure

  • Paragraph 1  – Current status, the current first year or second-year student, studying x, on track for first or distinction applying for y.

  • Paragraph 2 – why you’re interested in them:

    • Use your firm profiles to support this – but don’t just make this a ‘ticking box’ for matching the firm’s values. It requires focus and genuineness. Usually ‘because of the people at the firm is a strong response and connecting with analysts (as an example) e.g. on LinkedIn for a brief call to gain an insight into the firm is a good approach for this – but depends on time constraints.

    • Give 2 or 3 points for why firm.

    • Getting involved in online webinars and workshops is a great way to gain an insight into ‘why the firm’


  •  Paragraph 3 – Why you’re a good fit:

    • List all the activities you’re involved with or have been involved with and select the most relevant skills you can draw from these.

    • If you’re entering your first year or are thin with experience to talk about e.g. struggling to find how you’re an innovative thinker, good communicator, like working under pressure, etc:

      • Make the most and get involved with uni societies/sports clubs; apply for positions of responsibility

      • Do anything you can to get actively engaged

      • Being involved with these activities gives you a greater bank of stories to draw upon

      • Linking it back to the firm – needs to be linked to skills for that division. You need to back these qualities you claim you have with specific examples.


  • Cover Letters might take you a long time at the start, but once you have written ‘why the division’ and ‘why you’ once round, this process quickly speeds up – but the quality assurance is very important.


  • One important thing to note is that speed must be prioritised. DO NOT wait a whole two weeks to perfect a cover letter before submitting the application if applications have opened – this will greatly minimise your chances. Being early is paramount to success. 

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