How To Write a Supporting Statement When Applying To a Job
With jobs getting more competitive over the years, some recruiters have to filter through hundreds of CVs daily. It's common for recruiters to read through a supporting statement before getting to your CV and cover letter. For this reason, it's important to know how to write an effective supporting statement to ensure the recruiters have seen all that you can offer. In this article, we discuss how to write a strong supporting statement with several examples to guide you.
What is a supporting statement?
A supporting statement is the part of your job application or CV where you can give evidence of how you meet specific job criteria. Your supporting statement can also be a professional summary or CV objective, both of which can demonstrate how your skills and qualifications fulfil the job requirements. Many employers spend only seconds scanning CVs and job applications, so writing a strong supporting statement is essential for showing employers how you can contribute to the role and for distinguishing yourself from other candidates.
Typically, a supporting statement is only a few sentences in length, but it can be as long as a paragraph. The length of your supporting statement can depend on the position, employer and the document you include it in, such as in a cover letter or CV. No matter the reason for writing your statement, it's important to:
Use keywords from the job description, such as a specific credential.
Describe how your qualifications fulfil the job requirements.
Give examples of past success in similar roles.
Show how you can contribute to the organisation.
How to write a supporting statement
Follow these steps to learn how to write a supporting statement:
1. Review the job description
Review the job description and take note of keywords and phrases that employers include. For instance, many requirements employers include in job descriptions can be keywords to use when describing your qualifications in your supporting statement. This ensures you show employers exactly how your skills and experience fulfil the role expectations and can contribute to their organisations' success.
2. Include relevant skills and qualifications
After reviewing the job description, use your statement to highlight how your skills and qualifications fulfil the specific requirements. Use keywords and phrases from the job details to describe your experience in the career field, so employers understand how your expertise relates to the job criteria. For instance, if an employer requires a specific degree and your credentials fulfil this requirement, share this information in your supporting statement.
3. Give examples of your success
Consider one or two examples of how you succeeded in past roles. Examples that demonstrate your experience and skills that relate directly to the job can give employers better insight into how you can achieve similar success for their team or department. When highlighting achievements, be sure to consider examples that show organisational, interpersonal and teamwork skills, along with your ability to communicate effectively.
4. Keep your supporting statement brief
Use up to three sentences for your statement to keep your details brief and easy to read. This helps gain employers' attention quickly when they scan your application, increasing the chances they review your CV further and contact you for an interview. Include your most relevant traits that fulfil the requirements in your first sentence, with an example of a related achievement in the second sentence. In your last sentence, describe how you plan to contribute to similar success for the organisation to which you're applying.
5. Format your statement
Follow a format that is appropriate to the document. For example, a supporting statement on a CV is often only two to three sentences in length, whereas a supporting statement in a cover letter can be up to four or five sentences. The most important factor to consider when formatting your statement is including relevant details that employers can see right away. Therefore, it's appropriate to format your statement at the top of your application or CV and as the first paragraph in a cover letter.
6. Proofread your statement
When you complete your supporting statement, ensure it's free from spelling and grammatical errors. When applying to multiple jobs, tailor each supporting statement to match the specific requirements for each position to which you apply. This ensures you highlight relevant skills and qualifications with each application.
Why are supporting statements important?
Including a supporting summary or statement in your job application or CV is essential for showing an employer you can contribute to their organisation. When scanning job applications, recruiters typically look for key qualifications, specific credentials and required skills before considering candidates for an interview. In a cover letter, the supporting statement is an important section that can gain employers' attention and show them exactly how your traits fulfil the criteria they look for in an employee.
Tips for writing your supporting statement
When writing your supporting statement, there are several things to consider. The following tips provide additional insight into how to write an effective statement:
Make your statements specific to each job application you submit so employers understand how you can benefit their organisations.
Use the company's name whenever applicable in your statement to help build rapport.
Give specific examples of your achievements to better show what you accomplished, such as percentages, amounts or numbers.
Reiterate how you plan to help the employer, so they understand your motivation to achieve results.
Show what you understand about the organisation by mentioning a challenge or current project you are excited to contribute to.
Related: What To Include in Your CV
Supporting statement templates
The following template provides an outline you can use when including a supporting statement on a job application or CV:
Opening sentence: includes how your qualifications and experience fulfil the requirements.
Second sentence: describes achievements that demonstrate your qualifications.
Third sentence: explains how you plan to achieve similar results for the company.
When writing a cover letter, it's appropriate to write up to four or five sentences in a paragraph to showcase your qualifications. Use the following template when including a supporting statement in a cover letter:
First sentence: State your interest in the job and describe your work experience.
Second sentence: Give two to three key qualifications that match the job requirements.
Third sentence: Use this sentence to highlight how your qualifications helped you achieve success.
Fourth and fifth sentences: Follow up your achievements with how you plan to achieve similar success in the role.
Supporting statement examples
The following examples show how to use the templates for writing supporting statements for a job application, CV and cover letter:
Example 1: supporting statement on a job application
The example below shows how you can use the template to write a supporting or summarising statement on a job application:
An experienced nursing assistant of three years, I am seeking employment with Bright Point Health. I hold certifications in medical assisting, CPR and first aid with strong attention to detail and communication skills. With the ability to improve patient care and positive outcomes, I am excited to contribute to Bright Pointe's continuing success as the county's premier health provider.
Example 2: supporting statement for a CV
Refer to the example below for including a supporting or summarising statement on a CV:
Recent graduate with a bachelor's degree in data analysis and statistics. Entry-level experience contributing to the finance sector through a nine-month internship with Greyfair Solutions. Ability to develop technical solutions, evaluate business data and maintain financial databases to increase the integrity of data security procedures by 17%.
Example 3: supporting statement for a cover letter
The supporting statement of a cover letter is usually the first paragraph, where candidates can showcase their most relevant qualifications and show employers how they fit the role. The example below shows how you can format an opening statement when writing a cover letter:
I am currently a software developer with over three years of experience in front end development, and I recently earned my Web Development Certificate. I'm proficient in C++, Python and Java languages, and I have experience implementing the Agile methodology with team members. In my past organisation, I developed new responsive software functions that helped increase the staff's efficiency by 20% during new project initiation. I believe my skills and qualifications make me a strong candidate for the senior developer position, and I am excited to apply to your organisation.
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