Writing your cover letter

Your cover letter is an opportunity to:

  • explain your motivation for applying for a job and why you want to work in the NSW Public sector
  • highlight key achievements from your previous work experience
  •  outline how your capabilities, knowledge, experience and qualifications make you suitable for the job.

A good cover letter is:

  • concise and logically written (no more than 1 to 2 pages in length)
  • tailored to the job you are applying for
  • specific about the work you have done or managed previously

Using a structure like the STAR method to write your cover letter will help you to highlight specific achievements.

STAR Model

The STAR model is the preferred way of presenting information, both in your written application and interviews.

 S – Situation – Set the context by describing the circumstance where you used the skills or qualities and gained the experience.

 T – Task - What was your role?  It is important to note you want to focus on your role and what you did - not what your team did.

 A – Actions – What did you do and how did you do it? What hurdles did you overcome? Remember to focus on you, not your team.

 R – Results – What did you achieve? What was the end result and how does it relate to the position you are applying for?