We posted an ad for local crew for a job in Norfolk. We wanted local people for two reasons. Obviously, if they live local, you pay less travel expenses. Also, they’re starting their day with 10 mins travel time instead of three hours. Means they’ll have more energy for filming, while I (who will have got up at 6am to be there at 9am) will be falling asleep. But most importantly, they’ve have local knowledge, so if a bit of kit breaks, where we can get a replacement, or a good pub for lunch, or a sneaky route to avoid traffic.

However, we got this:

Multi skilled camera operator -that’s me!

Wow, I’ve had a look at the ad going on www.itn.co.uk/www.productionbase.co.uk and came across this, it suites me down to a tee! My greatest passion in the world is working with moving pictures being a visual story teller. I love working in a team dealing with a lot of different interviewees and cases. Being able to do it in a vibrant and exciting place like ITN, is a dream for me. I’ve heard only positive things about ITN from freelancers who are working with you.

And so it went on. And on. And on. Over 500 words of cut’n’paste drivel. And at the end? An address in Chiswick. Which isn’t even in East London, let alone East Anglia. At least other applicants explained they were either living in Norfolk/Suffolk, or had places they could stay there.

Clearly, this applicant has just seen an ad for a camera person, and hit send. They hadn’t read or responded at all to the ad itself. What does this say to me? The camera person is so desperate for work they’ll reply to anything in the hope of getting work. This kind of scatter gun approach to applying for everything is really annoying as an employer.

cv4.tv tip: Target your applications, target your copy. Make your covering letter directly relevant and engaged with the vacancy, or it will turn your potential employee off even if your skills are perfect.

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Gavin Ricketts is a Producer/Director with over twenty year's experience. His courses on finding work in the creative industries has helped hundreds of Film and TV Crew win more work.