Updated On 27 November 2023 & Read Time 12 minutes
We all are familiar with the concept of resumes and cover letters to get your job or academic applications noticed. However, the formats, details, and everything else change with the change in the country. If you want to work in Canada and would like more information, this blog is precisely what you need. Here, we will shed some light on the cover letter and resume format and give you some tips and templates for both. So, let’s get started.
The most common misconception is that a resume and a CV are the same. Actually, a CV or resume still serves the same purpose. Its purpose is to inspire and persuade your hiring manager or recruiter that you are qualified for the position you are looking for. The Europeans refer to it as a Resume, but Americans refer to it as a CV. When it comes to Canada, there are areas where the terms resume and CV are used synonymously.
For the most part, though, this isn't the case throughout Canada. There are minor differences in the format, style, and goals between a resume and a CV. Let's examine the main distinctions to determine whether you require a CV or a resume for your application.
Function of both documents: In broader terms, a CV can be for a job or academic purposes, whereas a resume is specifically for job purposes.
Type of information: You must have a record of your academic documents and information, right? Well, a Cover Letter is also just like that. It records all your achievements, qualifications, certificates, etc. Whenever you achieve anything, it must be added to the CV. It is not tailored, unlike the resume, which is to be tailored for each job you’re applying to.
Length of both documents: Since a Cover Letter is a comprehensive record of all your achievements and qualifications, it can easily be 2-3 pages, but the length of the resume is usually shorter.
Generally, a Canadian-style cover letter should be formatted as follows:
Sections: The introduction, body part, and conclusion are the three major sections that comprise most of the material of your cover letter.
Greeting: In the beginning, write greetings for the intended personnel or organisation. Employ their prefix and complete name when addressing someone whose name you know and who controls hiring decisions. If unsure of someone's name, use a courteous, general greeting such as "To whomsoever it may concern."
Introduction: The first paragraph of your cover letter should be an introduction to yourself. In addition to your qualifications and the job search strategy you used, you could include the position you are interested in. Include their name and position in your cover letter if you have a contact at the company who referred you to the opportunity. No more than two or three lines should be used for your introduction in a paragraph.
Body or the content: Following the introduction comes the body of the cover letter. In these paragraphs, you must make valid points and convince the organisation you are applying to that you are a well-qualified and robust candidate. For this part, you can keep the following points in mind.
Which tasks are relevant to the position that you have expertise with? In your opinion, what did you learn? In light of this, how does this improve your candidature?
Which prior experiences pertain to this role and are relevant to your current position? In your opinion, what did you learn? In light of this, how does this improve your candidature?
If you decide to get hired, what are your plans? What does hiring you over someone else mean to the employer?
Conclusion: This constitutes the last paragraph of the Cover Letter. It allows you to conclude your CV and hint at your excitement about joining the organisation. It should be, at most, 4-5 statements.
Closing line and signature: To end the cover letter, use a closing line and include your signature. These are two main elements of the document, so ensure it is included.
The majority of Canadian firms require a specific cover letter structure. The more you follow through with it, the better it looks on your CV. Let us look at some essential tips when drafting a Cover Letter.
One page is the maximum length for a cover letter.
Use a typeface that looks professional.
The typeface choice for your cover letter should be unified.
A good font size for reading is essential to consider when printing your cover letter.
Your cover letter should include the right amount of spacing. With adequate space between each paragraph and section, the main body of the work should be single-spaced.
Add your contact details, email address, phone number, and residential address. Verify that the contact information is up to date-and functional.
Adding these points to your cover letter will make it appear better and more professional.
The format of a resume is different from that of a cover letter. Let us take a brief look at the Canadian resume format mentioned below.
Reverse chronological layout: The Canadian resume format includes the reverse chronological order where you first list the latest details of your professional journey, followed by the earlier ones.
Put out the right contact information: This part of the resume includes correct details about your full name, contact number, address and email details.
Summary of the resume: The first 2-3 lines of your Canadian resume format include a well-written summary of your resume. This is intended to draw the employer's attention and generally contains your profession, the total number of experience you have, your achievements, and your skills relevant to the position.
Work experience: This is the most important part of your Canadian resume format and includes all the professional experience you have which is relevant to the job you are applying for.
Academic information: In this part of your resume, include all the details related to your educational journey.
Skills and strengths: In this section, highlight your skills and strengths and include your strong suits from communication to software or management skills.
The little details impact your resume, along with all the essential material previously discussed. Let us take a look at some of the tips to draft a Canadian resume.
Canadian recruiters are more likely to take notice of a resume written in the Canadian way, so make sure you keep that in mind and use Canadian English.
You should know certain commonalities despite many variations in Canadian-style resume formats.
In a Canadian resume, a photograph is never included.
You must customise your resume for each organisation and role you’re applying to and not just send the same resume for every job.
It is a great plus point if you know other languages. So, make sure to add them along with proficiency in each.
Add any volunteering or internship experience you have.
To make the employer better understand you, add your hobbies and interests in the resume.
Let us take a look at the Canadian cover letter and resume templates.
Ms. Anna Cruz
British Columbia, V3T 2W1
(800) 667-2215 | firstname.lastname@example.org
November 20, 2023
Re: Application for Junior Sales Associate at XYZ
Dear Ms. Cruz,
I'm sending my résumé to XYZ Company Canada to apply for the Junior Sales Associate position. Having reviewed the qualifications, I think I meet the requirements after finding your listing on LinkedIn.
Aside from my sales specialisation course for the past three years, I have held two direct, hands-on B2B sales positions. I could address my client's problems and provide them with solutions because of my interest in human psychology and the abilities I have acquired.
I learned time management, professionalism, persuasiveness, and tenacity for my previous profile from working with over 12 different clients in various industries. These abilities will help the organisations I deal with both now and down the road.
It brightens my day to see this possibility, and the organisation's ideals of conviction and connection fit my work style tremendously. As I work with clients, I aspire to genuinely give value and do my part to help XYZ Company achieve a brighter future.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Junior Sales Associate
(Contact number) | email@example.com
A vibrant sales expert with a deep passion for interpersonal dynamics and human psychology. My approach to problem-solving and honesty is the foundation for building enduring sales relationships with clients that mutually benefit my organisation over time.
Junior Sales Associate, (Company name), Toronto, ON
Twelve hospitality clients for Skiles & Sons will be closed and onboarded by the sales team.
Helping with complete B2B sales cycles; this includes demonstrating products, comprehending specifications, responding to queries and doubts, and resolving initial onboarding issues.
Support the team in developing a sales strategy and prioritising high-value customers.
Producing, updating, and delivering weekly progress reports to the team.
Company Name., Toronto, ON
March 2018-February 2019
Carried out cross-selling and upselling while closely collaborating with the team to understand each client individually.
I presented insights, proposed solutions for the next stages, and attended sales meetings with top sales workers.
Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing
University of Northern British Columbia, Canada
Certified Marketing Rookie by the Canadian Professional Sales Association
Awarded in 2016
In conclusion, aiming for a Canadian organisation is a feat achieved only after meticulous efforts and a detail-oriented mindset. The above blog sheds some light on the Canadian cover letter and resume formats, tips, differences and templates. Remember all the information presented above as you prepare for what’s next in your life. We wish you all the best.
We hope you enjoyed reading about the cover letter and resume format and gained many great insights. If you’d like to know more about how to study in Canada, contact our expert country counsellors at any branch of Meridean Overseas Education Consultants (MOEC), who’ll help you in every step of your study abroad journey.
Q1. What is the recommended format for a cover letter and resume in Canada in 2024?
Ans. The recommended format for a cover letter in Canada typically includes a professional header with your contact information, followed by a salutation, an introduction stating the position you are applying for, body paragraphs highlighting your qualifications and relevant experience, and a closing paragraph expressing your interest and availability for an interview. For resumes, the preferred format in Canada is usually a reverse chronological order, starting with your most recent experience and education, followed by previous roles, skills, and achievements.
Q2. What are some tips for writing an effective Canadian cover letter in 2024?
Ans. To write an effective Canadian cover letter in 2024, tailor it to the specific job and company, highlighting your relevant skills and experiences. Research the company and incorporate its values and mission into your letter. Be concise, clear, and professional in your writing, demonstrating enthusiasm for the role. Use bullet points to emphasise key qualifications and accomplishments. Proofread for grammar and spelling errors, and ensure your letter is well-structured and customised for each application.
Q3. Are there any specific tips for creating a Canadian resume in 2024?
Ans. When creating a Canadian resume in 2024, start with a professional summary or objective statement highlighting your key qualifications and career goals. Use clear headings and bullet points to organise information. Focus on relevant work experience, skills, and achievements. Quantify your accomplishments whenever possible. Include education details, certifications, and professional development activities. Tailor your resume for each job application, emphasising the most relevant information. Use a clean and professional template, and ensure your resume is error-free and easy to read.
Q4: Where can I find templates for Canadian cover letters and resumes in 2024?
A4: There are various online resources to find templates for Canadian cover letters and resumes in 2024. Websites like Canva, Microsoft Office, and resume-building platforms provide a wide range of templates you can customise to suit your needs. Additionally, career centers at universities or colleges and job search websites may offer downloadable templates specifically designed for the Canadian job market.
Q5: Should I include references in my Canadian resume in 2024?
A5: It is generally not recommended to include references in your Canadian resume in 2024. Instead, you can create a separate document or provide references upon request during the later stages of the job application process. Use the limited space in your resume to focus on showcasing your skills, experiences, and qualifications. However, it's a good practice to have a list of professional references ready, including their contact information, which you can provide when specifically asked by the employer.