Do not rush to send your CV. The rules of business correspondence presume that your CV is just an attachment to your cover letter. To a large extent the results of your mailing will depend upon how you write your cover letter. The crewing agency or a shipping company will definitely pay attention to what you write in your cover letter.
Start with the Subject of your letter. You have to clearly understand that a crewing agency receives huge amount of emails and letters daily. Thus, it is essential to follow some rules and set some aims:
1) the email should be identified as a «useful», it should not get into the spam folder;
2) the email should be read by a person;
3) it should be easy to find your email in the inbox.
All these aims are easy to achieve, if you make the subject of the email equal to the title of your CV, for instance «Peter Kolotov – 3rd Mate». If you have a second qualification, you might want to indicate it after a comma or a slash (/). Please, avoid such despecifications as “Navigator”, “OOW” or “Engineer”.
If you apply for some specific vacancy in a foreign company, then you might want to indicate the following in the subject of your email: AB Sokolov - vacancy on Reefer carrier 12.12.15 with US visa.
If the crewing agency has posted vacancies, depending on the classes of vessels, then your CV will have a priority check if you use this kind of email subject.
Then let's go to a cover letter for our CV. The cover letter, together with the Subject of the email, should encourage and attract interest of the prospect employer to your application. The aim you have to achieve is that finally your CV has been read and reviewed.
You should briefly introduce some facts from your CV in the cover letter or include some advantages, that would make you a good choice for the potential employer.
The cover letter should be brief, but informative, as it usually takes about 10 seconds for a reviewer to read it for the first time. Briefly write that you are searching for a job, have work experience on these or that classes of vessels, what kind of position you apply for and on what position did you work before, what equipment can you work with, what professional qualities do you possess, what certificates or visas which could be interesting to your prospect employer do you own, what English fluency do you have. It is highly preferable not to indicate any personal information in the cover letter.
Let’s see some good examples:
I am an A/B. I have 20 years of working experience. Worked at AHTS, Ro-Ro, Belgium, Norwegian, German coasters. I have all the seamen’s books. Worked in mixed crews, speak conversational English on an Intermediate level. Have an active EU visa. Ready to work for 100 %.
Below you can see an example of a cover letter from an english website:
I've found your vacancy advertisement for a position of an able-bodied seaman in «Marine Telegraph». I would like to apply for this position.
For the last 3 years I have worked as an A/B at "Day and Night Ships". Before that I worked in the national shipping company for over a year. Please, see attached my documents. I've finished official training before starting the work. I can do any job an A/B should do. I'm very skillful in work with equipment and navigation.
I love to work at sea so much, that I’m ready to work at supply vessels or cruise ships. I’m diligent and hardworking and learn fast. I will prove my skills if you choose me for this position.
Thank you for reviewing my application.
Depending upon the type of company you apply to, the concept of your cover letter will change, which is clearly evident from the examples above.
When writing a cover letter it is important:
1) Not to exceed the text volume of A4 page, ideally your message would occupy just 5-7 lines of text.
2) Use a standard text format without any tables or charts, play of colors or fonts, etc.
3) Request a «Read Receipt» by ticking the correspondent feature/box in your email settings.
4) Carefully check your text for any errors or mistakes.
5) If the text is written in English, then ask someone who is fluent in English or a foreigner to check it.
If you do not want to make the cover letter yourself, then just use our Application Form mailing service feature. This service will send your Application Form through our proved employers database.